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9 of Marines killed in Iraq from Columbus unit

A Marine Corps spokesman says nine of the 14 Ohio-based Marines killed in Iraq Wednesday are from the Columbus-based Lima Company.

Master Sergeant Stephen Walter confirmed the Marines' assignment this afternoon. He says one's father lives in Columbus. The others have relatives scattered throughout the state.

Lima Company has already lost eleven servicemen since the beginning of the war, including four members in one operation in May. All the company's members are from the Marine reserves.

Lima company is part of a battalion based near Cleveland.

Major Kirk Greiner is spokesman for the Columbus-based Lima Company, which is part of the Third Battalion, 25th Marines in Brook Park.

Besides Columbus, the battalion also has units in Brook Park; Akron; Moundsville, West Virginia and Buffalo, New York.

The victims' names and units haven't been released, although a captain with the West Virginia unit says none of the dead are from there.

A spokesman for Congresswoman Deborah Pryce of Columbus says she was notified of the attack, which usually indicates there are casualties from the area.

The Pentagon says the Marines were traveling in an amphibious assault vehicle near Haditha in western Iraq.

It's the second attack on the battalion in three days. Six others were killed while on sniper duty on Monday.