CAMP DWYER, Afghanistan --
By all accounts, Cpl. Ian Muller lived full throttle, spreading a contagious lust for life in his wake.
The Marines of 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment gathered, in Marjah, Helmand province, Afghanistan, to remember the team leader from Danville, Vt., March 27.
Navy Seaman Jesse Deller, a corpsman with 2/8, described him as fit, muscular, outspoken and loud.
“He always carried his weight and then some,” said Deller, from Forksville, Pa. “He was the kind of guy I wanted to serve with in a combat zone, and showed it in our training together.”
Sgt. Thomas Whorl, Muller’s squad leader, developed a close working relationship and friendship with Muller during the deployment.
“He is by far one of the best team leaders and Marines I have ever had,” Whorl said. “He would always accomplish any mission no matter how difficult or demanding. He was my right-hand man.”
Their relationship spilled over to off duty hours. Muller and Whorl were gym partners and movie buddies.
“I would come off watch at midnight and stay up with him watching movies all night, and we would critique the movies on different categories,” recalled Whorl. “No matter how tired me and him were, we would do that every night and then complain about how tired we were, but still do the same thing the next night.”
Whorl said he will always remember Muller’s big smile and loud laugh.
“When he had a question to ask me, he always had this look on his face I can’t explain, but if I saw that look, I knew he was going to ask me something ridiculous or funny,” Whorl said. “The way he was always so pumped up about doing anything and his sarcastic humor I will never forget.”
Lance Cpl. Matthew Westbrook, a friend of Muller’s in 2/8, said Muller had a way of making any experience fun.
“He made the worst field ops enjoyable just by being himself,” said Westbrook, from Pike County, Ga. “No matter how tired or beat we were, he could always make everybody laugh and smile. He had one of those smiles and laughs that when you saw or heard it, it was contagious.”
“He was the kind of friend who would give you the shirt off his back,” added Lance Cpl. Ryan Moore, one of the Marines in Muller’s team and a native of Navarre, Ohio.
Westbrook said he will always consider Muller part of his family.
“I’ll never forget this one field op,” Westbrook reminisced. “Cpl. Muller and I were in a fighting hole, and some point in our conversation, he told me that the men that serve beside you are more than friends. They’re more than people you work with; they’re family.”
“There is no statement more true,” Westbrook said. “Cpl. Muller was a great Marine and a great team leader, but above all, he was my brother.”
Muller’s personal awards include the Purple Heart Medal, Combat Action Ribbon, and the Navy and Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal.
Muller is survived by his parents, Clifton and Susanne Muller. Muller is also survived by five brothers and one sister. He was 22-years-old.