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Flags to fly at half staff for Conn.-based Marine killed in Iraq

HARTFORD, Conn. --Gov. M. Jodi Rell on Tuesday ordered U.S. and state flags to be lowered to half staff in memory of a Marine killed in Iraq, who was part of a Connecticut-based reserves unit.

Lance Cpl. Christopher Cosgrove III, 23, of Cedar Knolls, N.J., was killed Sunday in Al Anbar province. The governor's office said Cosgrove was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment based in Plainville. He was previously assigned to the regiment's 2nd Battalion in Dover, N.J.

The governor called Cosgrove a hero, and it is appropriate that Connecticut honor him by lowering its flags.

"His connection to Connecticut is strong, and each of us owes him a debt of gratitude for the ultimate sacrifice he made in defending our freedom," Rell said in a statement.

Rell has called on flags to remain at half staff until Cosgrove is buried. Funeral arrangements are pending.