Marine Sgt.Wesley James Rice

Marine Sgt. Wesley James Rice

Died January 14, 2011 Serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom

27, of San Antonio, TX; Assigned to the Assault Amphibian School Battalion, Training and Instructor, died January 14, 2011 as a result of a training mission at Camp Pendleton, Ca.




Marine SGT. Wesley J. Rice
Sunrise: 01/01/1984 Sunset: 01/14/2011

There was no surprise that Wesley would make his entrance into our world on no other day than January 1st, NEW YEARS DAY with a bang! He would continue to captivate us with that same spirit of amazement as he lived for the next 27 years. There was never a dull moment when he was in your presence. Wesley was a charming and wonderful son, brother, husband, father and friend. His generous and caring spirit was deeply rooted in him. He loved God, his country, his family and friends. Wesley was a people person. If there was an inclination that you were feeling down or troubled, Wesley was there to lift you up with encouraging words, silly stunts or wisecracking jokes! During his deployments he kept morale up with his comical antics. Wesley enjoyed the outdoors. As a child he loved to skateboard, roller-skate, ride his bike, go camping, fishing and swimming. As he grew older, video games became a part of his life as did the cooking and food channel networks. We all miss his invigorating spirit but find comfort in knowing God’s word is true; Wesley is in the presence of our one true God.

Enlistment: March 14, 2005, United States Marine Corps.

Graduation: June 10, 2005, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, CA.
In September 2005, Sgt. Rice graduated the Assault Amphibian School.

Deployed March 2006 with 2nd Assault Amphibian Battalion, Delta Company, 2nd Platoon in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Deployed July 2007 with 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit aboard the USS Ponce.

In September 2009, reported to Assault Amphibian School Battalion, Training and Instructor Company as an Instructor.

During his Marine Corps career, Sergeant Rice’s personal awards include: Combat Action, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon (2), Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal (2), and Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, and Navy Unit Commendation.



  1. Blanca

    Wesley, you are missed and will forever be missed. We are comforted in knowing you are in a better place. We have many wonderful memories that we will forever cherish. You made us smile!
    Aunt Blanca 🙂

    • Linda Rice

      Thank you Blanca. Smile indeed! There’s something about his smile, and let’s not forget his grin!!

    • Lesley Rice

      His smile was breath taking. It was one of the things that attracted me to him.

  2. Linda Rice

    I love you son. I thank God that he loaned you to me for 27 years. I miss your silly jokes and your text messages! You would be proud that I have a smart phone now! lol I’m proud of you and I’m glad you knew it. I didn’t know when I saw you at Christmas December 2010 and New Year 2011 before y’all headed back to California that it would be my last, BUT God knew, and I’m so relieved to not have any regrets! See you in Glory!!

    • Lesley Rice

      I’m so glad we came home that christmas. He was so happy to see the family. We love you linda

    • Fran Morris

      I miss you Wesley. I still remember the week you and Clare stayed with us when you were 3 and she was 2. Such sweet smiles and bright eyes! As you grew up we kept in touch by email and later by text messages. I will always remember the Christmas we were all together in 2010, and still look at the pictures.

      • Linda Rice

        Thank you Fran. Yes I remember too ~ too sweet!
        Luv you Les and Gaby. <3

  3. Vince Maranto

    Wes AKA Mighty Mouse,
    This was just an inside joke and funny memory that Linda, Wes, and I had shared. Your mom and I were always and still always talk about you and as your aunt said – you will forever be missed
    You are without a doubt an American hero!
    I truly thank you for your service and can’t wait to see you again in Paradise!

    • Linda Rice

      Oh yes Mighty Mouse! Vince I will never forget the encouraging words you shared with me on that fateful day. They lifted me up just at the right time. Thank you friend!

  4. Bebe Gonzalez

    Wesley, not a day goes by that I don’t think about you and all the good times we had; the laughs, the pranks and running around in the “flybird.” I miss you and think about what a fun person and Marine you were. Thank you for your commitment to God and country ~ you sacrificed far greater than self. I love you and may you rest in the majestic greatness of God. Forever in my heart!

  5. Alicia Stolts

    Linda, your son was a true hero and his legacy continues to inspire us and live on. A mother’s love lives on forever in our hearts and in our minds. How lucky Wesley was to have you has his mom. Love, Alicia

  6. Benjamin Vidales

    Wesley, I think about you everyday man! Who would’ve thought 20 years ago that you would’ve been looked at as a hero? I’m VERY proud to have such a great friend be part of my life! You continue to inspire me and others forever! When you left this world, the US National Anthem took on a whole different meaning and meant A LOT more! Whenever I hear it played, I stare at the US Flag and thank God for a friend like you who gave everything his all and will always be remembered as a hero!
    Thank you for ALL the great memories from Elementary School to High School and a few beyond. I miss you and love you man! Thank you Wesley

  7. Joshua Casso

    Thank you for being of service! You are a inspiration to me and to those who knew you!

  8. Regina R Drasher

    I know that as Wesley is guarding the Streets of Heaven, he is also watching over his loved ones. I am so grateful for him & his service!

  9. Brittanie Hudgens

    Wesley was an amazing friend & an excellent Marine. I will always miss his cooking & great attitude. He will forever be in our hearts & he will always be my “mexican husband”. I wish we had met him sooner, he made an everlasting impact on our lives. His upbeat personality was infectious & will always be remembered by everyone he came in contact with. Love, the Hudgens family.

  10. MSgt Edling

    Rice was a character, and I enjoyed having in my platoon. I really enjoyed what he did for everyone. Sgt Rice rest in peace.

    Plt Sgt (Delta, 2nd plt)

  11. Sgt. Rice you will never be forgotten. I’m proud to have served with you and you always had a way to make everyone laugh. D. CO was the closest company I have ever been with. RIP brother!

  12. Stella G Vidales

    Dear Wesley,
    How blessed I was to have been your substitue teacher at James Bowie Elementary! Although, at that time, I had no idea what you would grow up to be, because you were always getting into trouble in my class for cracking jokes and making your classmates laugh! When years later, Benjamin told me he had reconnected with you via FaceBook and that you were in the Marine Corps, I had to laugh! I remember telling Benjamin, “Joker Wesley Rice?! The same boy who was always trying my paitence at Bowie?!” We both laughed and I asked him to tell you “Hello” for me. Benjamin was sooo excited to have found you & to be able to play catch up with you! The smile on his face just lit up his face!! He was truly happy to have found his boyhood friend again!

    Then, when Benjamin told me you had entered into the gates of Heaven to report for duty at your new post as a Marine guarding the gates of Heaven, my heart was both broken, but at the same time, happy. Broken because you were so very young, but happy because you are now in Heaven. Still, all I could see in my mind’s eye was that little joker with glasses getting into trouble in class because of his sense of humor. Thank you so very, very much for your unselfish service to this great country of ours. And thank you for being such a great friend to my son, Benjamin. RIP+

    Mrs. Stella G Vidales

  13. Cpl. Sanchez, Saul

    Sgt Wesley J. Rice, or how I liked to call you Coke bottle glasses….haha
    You were an amazing Marine and a wonderful person! Everyday we miss you brother. Miss your smile and just all around your personality. Rest in Peace man. Semper Fi!

  14. Arturo Bernal

    Camarada, I’m proud to have known you even a lil. Mi mejor recuerdo was when you mentioned what you’d name your lil girl in the barracks and me wondering why un guero had a San Anto tat on him, only to find out you were also a fellow Tejano. Down to the food we missed like our moms’ tortillas de harina, Whataburger and everything and anything else that makes home home. I’m sorry to see you go as a daddy y el viejo de tu hina, but you’re gone as a hero. Our hermanitos owe their very breath to you and I hope they honor you by being the best of the few good men they can ever be. Semper Fi.

  15. Neal Hambleton

    Man, I miss you goofy ass so much. I will never forget when we were in Fallujah at the ready ramp, and you were trying to check you hatches, and tripped over the mouring clete, and i watched you belly flop into the moon dust, and you thought that no one was watching when you got up and looked around like no one was looking, and then you took your glasses off and all i saw was a perfect outline of your coke bottle glasses of dust. Miss you everyday brother.

    • Linda Rice

      That’s hilarious Hambleton! I totally see it!! Thanks for sharing!

  16. Lesley Rice

    5 years ago when we first started talking I never thought I would be where I am today.. Without you. I miss your silly jokes, your tickle time, helping me cook and playing with our daughter. Not a day let a lone a secOnd goes by that I don’t miss you. I think about our time together and I can’t helped but smile because no matter what we went through we always knew that we would be there for each other. It was an honor and still is to be called your wife. Gabriella is going to be so proud of her daddy and can walk with her head high knowing what her daddy stood for. So my promise to you is to always wake up with a smile, take care of our daughter and be as brave as you. I love you more than words can express. We are so proud of you and miss you dearly. Until we meet again my sweet angel. HBS

  17. Justin Hain

    REST IN PEACE my brother! I didn’t know you that well but what I did know of you left a lasting inpression! YAT YAS see you on the other side one day !

  18. Laura Gonzales

    Wow, Aunt Linda, Thank God for this website! Such beautiful tribute honoring our hero, Wesley. Aunt Linda, Wesley is so blessed to have you as his mother. He would be so proud of everything you have done for him! I think about Wesley all the time and I miss him so much. Every time my son watches Spongebob, I think of how much Wesley loved watching it, too! 🙂 I thank God for all the wonderful times we shared together growing up. God is good all day, every day! I love you, Wesley and Claire, so much!!!!

    • Linda Rice

      Thank you Laura. I chose this website because it truly honors our fallen heros and this is for them and about them. As Wesley’s mom there are no words to describe the immense pain in losing your firstborn and only son, but it helps to have loving, supportive friends and family like you and God to help continue lifes journey.

  19. Christopher Witt

    I only knew Wesley a short time before the incident but, I knew him long enough to know he was a genuinely good man, with a good heart, and above all else, he loved his family. I remember sitting on duty with him the last time he stood it, and seeing the picture of him, and his family. I told him how much I respected that he is such a family man, and so proud of not only being a father, but, being married. It is so common for people to become accustomed to what they have and not appreciate each other anymore but, this was not the case with Wesley. He seemed to always appreciate everything he had, and make the best of any situation. It was an honor to have worked along side him, and even inherit his old track before the incident. God bless. Rest in peace

    • Lesley Rice

      He is looking down on you and always protecting you guys. Thank you

    • Linda Rice

      Thank you Witt for the generous compliment. As Wesley mother it pleases me to know that he did not forget what I tried to instill in him. We can only guide the best we can and then hope our children cleave to what is right as adults.

  20. Sharone Blue

    Rice, I remember when you first came to the platoon. I was like what are we going to do with this Marine. While on deployment to Iraq, I got a chance to have you in my section for a split minute and you touched my whole section with the Pirranha, and boy did we laugh. I got a chance to catch up with you a couple years down the line and you were no longer LCpl Rice, but Sgt Rice and a leader of Marines, I was proud of you and still remember rapping with you and Green on the back of my track. Yat Yas, my brother you are truly missed and a True American Hero.

    • Linda Rice

      Awww, thank you Blue for the fond memory and visual! I don’t think anyone who has witnessed the “pirannha” in action can ever forget. It’s seared into our memory bank! LoL

  21. Linda Rice

    Today marks 2 years since you departed this earth. Thinking about you today Wesley, not just today but everyday. I continue to celebrate your life with family and friends. Words cannot express my gratitude to God for his continued peace and rest. It is a blessing to know that you are with your Creator. Your job is finished, you completed your race. To God be the glory! We all miss you but in the meantime we will continue to march forward. Forever in my heart. Love always, mom. <3

  22. Lauren

    Wesley, not a day goes by when you are not thought of and deeply missed. You were an honorable son, husband, father, friend, and American. I have enjoyed reading your friends’ and families memories. It sounds like the day was not dull when you were around! Thank you for the ultimate sacrifice.

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