By Connie Mabin, AP
Ohio families fed up with casualties in battalion
"Tell Bush to get our soldiers out of there now before any more of our soldiers die. This is getting to be ridiculous."
BROOK PARK, Ohio -- Combat in Iraq this week has taken a brutal toll on a Marine battalion based in this working-class town: Nineteen members from the unit were killed over two days.
The sorrow in Brook Park, a Cleveland suburb of 21,000 people, was painfully clear Wednesday among the line of customers sipping their morning coffee at a doughnut shop down the street from the headquarters of the 3rd Battalion, 25th Marines. Nearly everyone at the counter said they knew someone who was connected to the battalion.
"You never know who it could be. It could be your best friend. It could be your husband -- it could be anyone from here," Eleanor Matelski, 69, said as she angrily tore up a paper cup that had held her coffee.
"Tell Bush to get our soldiers out of there now before any more of our soldiers die. This is getting to be ridiculous," she said.
Pat Wilsox, who said some of the reserves from the battalion frequent the doughnut shop he manages, threw her hand over her heart when she heard the news that the unit had suffered more losses.
"Oh my God," she said softly. "I'm all for protection but this is getting a little bit ridiculous."