Friday memorial for Maplewood Marine killed in Afghanistanby Dan Olson, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — A Marine from Maplewood is Minnesota's most recent casualty in the war in Afghanistan.
The Department of Defense says Chad Frokjer, 27, was killed while conducting combat operations Thursday in Afghanistan's Helmand province. USMC officials said Frokjer was convoy commander of a mobile assault team for the 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Division.
Family members and the minister making arrangements for a memorial service declined to be interviewed for this story. Frokjer's father told the Star Tribune newspaper that his son signed up for the Marines after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 because he wanted to make sure nothing like that ever happened again.
Frokjer graduated from North High School in North St. Paul in 2002. Family members told the paper that he joined the Marines because they were the best and the "baddest."
Family members describe him as a NASCAR race fan and avid sports fan. He is survived by his wife, Leslie, who is pregnant with their first child, due in September.
A public memorial ceremony will be held Thursday afternoon at Holman Field in downtown St. Paul, when Frokjer's casket arrives from Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. Visitation will be on Friday afternoon and evening at St. Mark's Lutheran Church in North St. Paul.
Chad Frokjer is the 90th service member with strong Minnesota ties to be killed in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan.