I don’t normally do this sort of thing, but it’s incredibly difficult for me to ignore the untimely death of someone that I care about.
On Saturday night, Tyler Cone ended his own life. Cone was an active duty Marine with 3/6 in Camp Lejeune, whom I also happened to spend my entire enlistment with in 3/3. Cone and I were in the same battalion in boot camp, we were in the same Assaultman class at SOI, and we ended up in the same platoon and section with India Company, 3rd Battalion 3rd Marines. We went to Iraq together twice (though separately during my second deployment). I got out and he reenlisted to go to Afghanistan further on (to great acclaim, from what I understand).
Cone was a great Marine, and he was a great person. For whatever flaws he had, I don’t know of anyone that didn’t absolutely love the man. He was a character with a wild side, yet fiercely intelligent and had a great sense of humor. He liked to make people laugh. He shaved my chest once–hell, he even got drunk and pissed on me once, but I could only stay mad at him for a couple of days. He loved to drink, he kind of owned it as his thing. Cone was that one guy. Probably some of my favorite stories while I was in were Cone’s bar stories in Hawaii. He was the guy that could run a 300 PFT completely hung over. Cone was absolutely fucking crazy, and we all loved that about him. He really was everything you think of when you think of the word Marine.
Cone was a Terminal Lance at heart, having recently been busted back down to E3. He was facing a lot of personal issues, and unfortunately he decided that the only way out was to end his life. No one will ever fully know what was going through his head at the time, but it doesn’t really matter at this point. All I know is that a good man is now dead, and he left behind a wake of shocked people that loved him. The last time I actually talked to him was about a year ago over Facebook (you know how things are, it’s hard to keep in contact with everyone all the time
is what I keep telling myself). I knew things weren’t going great for him but I had no idea it would lead to this, he had a reputation for being somewhat immortal amongst his peers.
So Cone, wherever you are, rest in peace, and I’m sorry.
I’m sorry that you felt like you had no choice.
I’m sorry that we weren’t there for you when you needed it.
Everyone that ever met you loved you.