Fallen Hero: Fighting for Marine's dream five years later - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Fallen Hero: Fighting for Marine's dream five years later

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The family of a fallen Camp Pendleton Marine is asking the public for help in keeping his legacy alive. Captain Thomas Heitmann was killed in 2011, after his helicopter crashed during a training exercise.

He grew up in the Midwest and had attended a small school outside of Chicago called St. Bede. His passion was running, but there was one problem - St. Bede did not have a track so runners would practice on hard pavement.

Heitmann had told his family that one day he was going to get a track built at St. Bede. His family is now trying to make his grand plan a reality.

St. Bede's plan to build an assisted living center fell through and the plot size needed to build a track became available.

All that is needed now is the money.

The family has already raised about $100,000, but need another $250,000.

Captain Heitmann's family said it was sports that taught him the qualities it took to become a marine.

The family has set up the Captain Thomas John Heitmann Memorial website where the public can donate money, order t-shirts and see pictures of Captain Heitmann.

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