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Afghanistan, August 2012: Return of the Fallen

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In August, the 143rd month of the conflict, 53 coalition forces based in Afghanistan were killed -- the most in a single month since last September. Of these, five were from New Zealand, five from Australia, three from the UK, one from France, and the rest from the United States -- 50 men and 3 women ranging in age from 20 to 55. Collected below are images from the many ceremonies honoring the return of these 53 fallen soldiers. While the photographs may bear some similarities, keep in mind that each one represents a separate individual life lost in Afghanistan just last month. [41 photos]

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The transfer case containing the remains of U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Gregory T. Buckley is moved by a U.S. Marine carry team during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base in Dover Delaware, on August 13, 2012. Lance Cpl. Buckley who was from Oceanside, New York, was killed on August 10th while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
The transfer case containing the remains of U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Gregory T. Buckley is moved by a U.S. Marine carry team during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base in Dover Delaware, on August 13, 2012. Lance Cpl. Buckley who was from Oceanside, New York, was killed on August 10th while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Lance Cpl. Greg Buckley Jr.'s father Greg, center, is escorted from St. Agnes Cathedral after his funeral Mass,on August 18, 2012 in Rockville Center, New York. Buckley Jr. was barely 21 years old when he was killed in an attack by a policeman in Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer) #
New Zealand soldiers pay their respect during a ramp ceremony for Corporal Luke Tamatea, Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker and Private Richard Harris at Bagram Air Base on August 21, 2012 in Bagram, Afghanistan. The three New Zealand soldiers were killed in Afghanistan on August 19 after their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb. (New Zealand Defence Force via Getty Images) #
Family members of Corporal Luke Tamatea pay their respect during a combined memorial service for fallen soldiers Corporal Luke Tamatea, Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker and Private Richard Harris at Burnham Military Camp in Christchurch, New Zealand, on August 25, 2012. The three fallen New Zealand soldiers were fatally wounded in action on August 4, 2012, in the Bayman Province in Afghanistan. (Martin Hunter/Getty Images) #
Army pallbearers carry the coffin of Private Richard Harris at a Military ramp ceremony held for Corporal Luke Tamatea, Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker and Private Richard Harris on August 23, 2012 in Christchurch, New Zealand. The soldiers are performing a haka, acknowledging the lives and feats of their fallen comrades. The powerful, moving ceremony can also be seen here, in a video from the New Zealand Defence Force. (Martin Hunter/Getty Images) #
Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker's mother pays her respect during a combined memorial service for fallen soldiers Corporal Luke Tamatea, Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker and Private Richard Harris at Burnham Military Camp in Christchurch, New Zealand, on August 25, 2012. (Martin Hunter/Getty Images) #
A U.S. Navy carry team transfers the remains of Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Clayton R. Beauchamp, of Weatherford, Texas, at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware, on August 9, 2012. Beauchamp was assigned to 1st Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 6, 1st Marine Division (Forward), I Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward), Camp Pendleton, California, (USAF/Roland Balik) #
U.S. Air Force soldiers carry the flag-draped transfer case containing the remains of Air Force Maj. Walter D. Gray, during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base, on August 10, 2012. Gray, who was from Conyers, Georgia, was killed alongside two other American troops in a suicide attack in Kunar province, while serving in the Air Force in Afghanistan. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images) #
Marines with Bravo Company, 2nd Tank Battalion, pay their final respects to Cpl. Daniel L. Linnabary II during a memorial ceremony in the sweltering Afghanistan sunlight, on September 1, 2012. Linnabary, 23, from Hubert, North Carolina, was a tank gunner with 2nd Platoon, Bravo Company, 2nd Tank Battalion. He was killed August 6, while conducting combat operations in Now Zad District. This was his first deployment to Afghanistan. During the ceremony, commanders and friends spoke of the man and Marine Linnabary was and what they would remember most about him. (USMC/Cpl. Mark Garcia) #
The transfer case containing the remains of Marine Cpl. Daniel L. Linnabary II of Hubert, North Carolina, sits at the end of the loader ramp upon arrival at Dover Air Force Base, on August 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana) #
Chelsea Linnabary, the widow of US Marine Corps Corporal Daniel L. Linnabary II is consoled during burial ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery, in Arlington, Virginia, on August 23, 2012. (Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images) #
A Navy carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of Petty Officer 1st Class Sean P. Carson on Dover Air Force Base, on August 19, 2012. According to the Department of Defense, Carson, of Renton, Washington, died while supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. Already in the vehicle are transfer cases containing the remains of Army Chief Warrant Officer Brian D. Hornsby of Melbourne, Florida, case not shown, Army Chief Warrant Officer Suresh N. A. Krause of Cathedral City, California, case not shown, Army Spc. James A. Justice of Grover, North Carolina, second case from right, and Army Spc. Richard A. Essex of Kelseyville, California, right case, who, according to the Department of Defense, all died while supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark) #
A French Army carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of Major Franck Bouzet, 45, at Kabul military airport, on August 9, 2012. Franck Bouzet was killed on August 7, during a shootout with insurgents. (AP Photo/ECPAD, Jean Francois d'Arcangues) #
21-year-old Spc. Mabry J. Anders, 4th Special Troops Battalion, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, from Baker City, Oregon. Anders died in a "green-on-blue" attack, killed along with Sgt. Christopher J. Birdwell, both shot by a member of the Afghan National Army who had turned his weapon on them in Kalagush, Afghanistan, on August 27. (U.S. Army) #
A Marine carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of Sgt. Justin M. Hansen at Dover Air Force Base, on July 26, 2012. According to the Department of Defense, Hansen, 26, of Traverse City, Michigan, died July 24, 2012 while conducting combat operations in Badghis province, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark) #
U.S. Air Force Colonel Gretchen M. Wiltse, right, and U.S. Army Major General Al Aycock, second from right, salute as an Army carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of U.S. Army Private First Class Patricia L. Horne, on August 26, 2012, at Dover Air Force Base. Horne, of Greenwood, Mississippi, died while supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) #
U.S. Army soldiers carry the flag-draped transfer case containing the remains of U.S. Army Maj. Thomas E. Kennedy, during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base, on August 10, 2012. Kennedy, who was from West Point, New York, was killed alongside two other American troops in a suicide bombing, while serving in the U.S. Army in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Kennedy was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado,(Patrick Smith/Getty Images) #
The remains of Army Staff Sgt. Carl Hammar arrive on a caisson for a burial ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, on July 30, 2012. Hammar, 24, of Lake Havasu City, Arizona, died July 14, in Khost province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from enemy small arms fire. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 501st Infantry Regiment, 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) #
Parents of of Army Staff Sgt. Carl Hammar, from left, Ulf and Judy Hammar and his sister Tabitha Gordon, watch an Arlington Lady (left) speak to his son Lux Hammar and daughter Valeroia Hammar during a burial ceremony for Hammar at Arlington National Cemetery, on July 30, 2012. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) #
An Army carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of Pfc. Jose Oscar Belmontes at Dover Air Force Base, on July 30, 2012. According to the Department of Defense, Belmontes, 28, of La Verne, California, died July 28, 2012 in Wardak province, Afghanistan of wounds sustained from enemy small arms fire. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark) #
A combination picture of the official portraits of Australian Private Nathanael Galagher (left) and Lance Corporal Mervyn McDonald, who were both killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan on August 30, 2012. (Reuters/Australian Defence Ministry/Handout) #
Transfer cases containing the remains of Army Spc. Benjamin C. Pleitez, (left case) Army Sgt. 1st Class Bobby L. Estle, (right case) and Army Pfc. Jose Oscar Belmontes, (not shown) sit on a loader during a prayer at Dover Air Force Base, on July 30, 2012. According to the Department of Defense, Pleitez, 25, of Turlock, California, died July 27, 2012 in Mazar-e-Sharif, Afghanistan and Estle, 38, of Lebanon, Ohio, and Belmontes, 28, of La Verne, California, both died July 28, 2012 in Wardak province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained from enemy small arms fire. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark) #
Solders pay their final respects to U.S. Army Spc. James Justice of Chosen Company, 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, during a memorial ceremony at Combat Outpost Sultan Khyel, August 24, 2012. (U.S. Army/Sgt. Michael Sword) #
U.S. Army soldiers carry a flag-draped transfer case containing the remains of U.S. Army Spc. Richard A. Essex during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base, on August 19, 2012. Essex, who was from Kelseyville, California, was killed while serving in the U.S. Army in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images) #
A U.S. Army carry team transfers the remains of Army Chief Warrant Officer Suresh N. A. Krause of Cathedral, California, at Dover Air Force Base, on August 19, 2012. Krause was among four soldiers who died of wounds suffered on August 16, as the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter they were manning crashed in Afghanistan. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. (USAF/Adrian R. Rowan) #
A U.S. Army soldier shuts the door of the transfer vehicle as five flag-draped transfer cases lay secure containing the remains of five U.S. Army and U.S. Navy soldiers, during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base, on August 19, 2012. Those killed while serving in the U.S. Army in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, were: U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 3, Brian D. Hornsby, U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 2, Suresh N. A. Krause, U.S. Army Spc. James A. Justice, U.S. Army Spc. Richard A. Essex, and U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Sean P. Carson. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images) #
Senior Airman Joshua Fernandez pauses after closing the doors of a transfer vehicle that holds a transfer case containing the remains of Sgt. 1st Class Coater B. DeBose at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware, on August 22, 2012. DeBose, of Stateline, Mississippi, was killed in Spin Boldak, Afghanistan, from injuries suffered from small arms fire. Two Afghan policemen reportedly opened fire on a group of coalition and Afghan troops, killing DeBose and an Afghan police sergeant. (AP Photo/Ann Heisenfelt) #
An Army honor guard carry the coffin of Army Staff Sgt. Richard Berry of Scottsdale, Arizona, during a burial services at Arlington National Cemetery, on August 14, 2012. According to the Defense Department, Berry died July 22 in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from an enemy improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 508th Special Troops Battalion, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) #
The remains of Lance Cpls. Pralli Drurrer and Rory Malone are carried off a military transport plane in a ceremony in Christchurch, New Zealand, on August 10, 2012. The two were killed in a gun battle in Afghanistan over the weekend. (Sam Shepherd/NZ Defence Force via Getty Images) #
Soldiers perform a haka at the Military Commemorative Service for LCPL Durrer and LCPL Malone at Burnam Military Camp in Christchurch, New Zealand, on August 11, 2012. The soldiers are performing their unit haka, acknowledging the lives and feats of their fallen comrades. The powerful, moving ceremony can also be seen here, in a video from the New Zealand Defence Force. (Martin Hunter/Getty Images) #
A transfer case with the remains of Army Sergeant 1st Class Coater B. Debose of State Line, Mississippi, waits to be unloaded during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base August 22, 2012 in Dover, Delaware. (Alex Wong/Getty Images) #
A transfer case containing the remains of U.S. Marine Cpl. Richard Rivera, is moved by a U.S. Marine carry team during a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base, on August 13, 2012. Cpl. Rivera who was from Oxnard, California, was killed on August 10 in Garmsir, Afghanistan, after being shot by an Afghan civilian. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images) #
Command Sgt. Maj. Kevin J. Griffin, of Laramie, Wyoming, died on August 1, 2012, when two insurgents detonated vests laden with explosives in Kunar province. Griffin was one of three troops killed in the suicide attack, all assigned to units based at Fort Carson in Colorado. The Defense Department identified them Thursday as 38-year-old Air Force Maj. Walter D. Gray, of Conyers, Georgia; 35-year-old Army Maj. Thomas E. Kennedy, of West Point, New York; and 45-year-old Command Sgt. Maj. Kevin J. Griffin. (AP Photo/U.S. Defense Dept) #
Soldiers from B Company, 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, Task Force 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team bow their heads during a memorial ceremony for U.S. Army Pfc. Andrew Keller of B. Company, at Combat Outpost Charkh in Logar Province, Afghanistan, on August 22, 2012. Keller was killed when insurgents attacked his unit in Charkh, in Logar province, Afghanistan. (U.S. Army/Sgt. Michael Sword) #
Transfer cases containing the remains of Army 1st Sgt. Russell R. Bell of Tyler, Texas, Army Staff Sgt. Matthew S. Sitton of Largo, Florida, Army Pfc. Jesus J. Lopez of San Bernardino, California, and Marine Lance Cpl. Curtis J. Duarte of West Covina, California, sit on the loader ramp, upon arrival at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware, on August 4, 2012. The Department of Defense announced the death of Bell, Sitton, Lopez and Duarte who were supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana) #
A U.S. Marine Corps carry team transfers the remains of Department of State Foreign Service Officer II Mr. Ragaei Abdelfattah, of Annapolis, Maryland, at Dover Air Force Base, on August 12, 2012. Abdelfattah, a USAID officer, was killed in a suicide bomb attack in Konar province, on August 8, 2012. (U.S. Air Force photo/Roland Balik) #
A combination picture shows official photographs of Australian soldiers Sapper James Martin (left), Private Robert Poate (right) and Lance Corporal Stjepan Milosevic. The soldiers were killed in southern Afghanistan on August 29, 2012 by an Afghan wearing a soldier's uniform as Australia suffered its worst combat losses since the Vietnam War. Another two troops died in a helicopter crash in the south on August 30. (Reuters/Australian Department of Defence) #
An Army carry team carries a transfer case containing the remains of Army Staff Sgt. Matthew S. Sitton of Largo, Florida, upon arrival at Dover Air Force Base, on August 4, 2012. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana) #
Marines with Military Working Dogs Platoon, Headquarters and Supply Company, 1st Law Enforcement Battalion (Forward), I Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group, pay their final respects to Sgt. Joshua R. Ashley during a memorial ceremony in the Regional Command Southwest chapel, on August 17, 2012. Ashley, from Rancho Cucamonga, California, was killed in action on July 19, while conducting combat operations in Helmand province. (USMC/Cpl. Mark Garcia) #
Senior Airman DarRon Harmon closes the door of a transfer vehicle that holds a transfer case containing the remains of Staff Sgt. Christopher J. Birdwell at Dover Air Force Base, on August 29, 2012. According to the Department of Defense, Birdwell, of Windsor, Colorado, died while supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Ann Heisenfelt) #
A New Zealand Army piper plays at the Military Commemorative Service for LCPL Durrer and LCPL Malone at Burnam Military Camp in Christchurch, New Zealand, on August 11, 2012. (Martin Hunter/Getty Images) #

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