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Honoring a Military Hero at Hartnell's Main Stage

March 6th, 2014

SALINAS, Calif. - On Saturday, March 8, 2014 family and friends will hold a memorial service for Chief Warrant Officer 2 Edward Balli, an unmanned aerial vehicle operator on his fourth combat deployment. The service will be held at Hartnell College’s Main Stage, at 411 Central Avenue, Building K in Salinas, CA.

The memorial will commence at 11:00 a.m. and is open to the public. During the program, there will be a 21-gun salute. A reception will follow at 12:30 p.m. at the Student Center, Building C. Parking is free during the event.

"Mr. Balli's family approached the College about holding the service at Hartnell and we immediately said 'yes' because of our sincere appreciation for the service of our men and women in the military,” said Hartnell Superintendent/President, Dr. Willard Lewallen.

Hartnell College is proud to have the official designation as a "military friendly college." In 2012 we opened a veterans service center to provide education support services tailored to military veterans.

"It is an honor for us to host the memorial service for Chief Warrant Officer 2, Edward Balli," added Lewallen. "We are honored to have the opportunity to join with the family and the community in recognizing Mr. Balli's distinguished military service and his ultimate sacrifice for our nation."

Dignitaries such as Leon Panetta, Sam Farr, and other elected officials plan to attend.

Balli was killed in Afghanistan after insurgents detonated a makeshift bomb and opened fire on sleeping troops January 20, 2014. He was laid to rest with full military honors on February 7, 2014 in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii.

Hartnell Community College District

The Hartnell CCD serves over 15,000 students annually through its main campus in Salinas, the Alisal Campus in East Salinas, the King City Education Center, and various outreach learning centers throughout the Salinas Valley. Hartnell College, a Hispanic Serving Institution, provides workforce training, basic skills courses, and prepares students for transfer to four-year colleges and universities. Hartnell College is recognized for its innovative public and private partnerships that support world class STEM education, career technical education, fine and performing arts, humanities, and athletics. We are growing leaders through opportunity, engagement, and achievement. For more about Hartnell CCD, visit www.hartnell.edu.