BALTIMORE (WJZ)– A Baltimore National Guardsman is killed in Afghanistan as violent demonstrations rock the country. The unrest is now in its sixth day. It all stems from the burning of Muslim holy books on an American airfield.

Monique Griego has more from the victim’s family.

Family members don’t have too many details on how he was killed, but they are remembering the life of the man they call their hero.

“He was the best soldier that you could have been.”

Aaron Marchanti and his sister Leah are mourning the loss of their father– 48-year-old Maj. Robert Marchanti. The Army National Guardsman was serving in Kabul, Afghanistan where outrage over the burning of a Quran by American troops has led to violent demonstrations.

Saturday, two soldiers– a lieutenant colonel and a major– were shot inside what was supposed to be one of the most secure areas of a government ministry building. But the military has yet to confirm Marchanti was one of them.

“We don’t know anything about what happened,” Aaron Marchanti said.

Marchanti’s family is aware of the ongoing violence in Afghanistan, but they are choosing to remember how the father of four lived.

And especially how he loved his wife.

“He lived to love her. That was like his job. It was a love story straight out of ‘The Notebook,'” Aaron Marchanti said.

“He’s always said, ‘Take care of Mommy’. He said, ‘Take care of Mom,'” Leah Marchanti said.

“‘Take care of my sweetheart. If anything ever happens to me.’ So that’s what we’re going to do,” Aaron Marchanti said.

But Marchanti left his mark on more than just his own family.

For years, Marchanti worked as a physical education teacher for Baltimore County Schools. Friends and former students are now paying to tribute to Marchanti online while his own children reflect on loss of the man who meant so much.

“My father has been my idol, and he has been my hero. And I grew up trying to be just like him. And I hope and pray that I can be even 50 percent of what that man was,” Aaron Marchanti said.

“If more fathers could be like he was, this would be a better place with men like him,” Leah Marchanti said.

In the past, Maj. Marchanti had done one tour of duty in Kosovo. This was his first tour of duty in Afghanistan. Family members were looking forward to his safe return later this year.

A spokesman for the international force says despite the tensions, it will continue to stand by its Afghan partners and not let these clashes divide the coalition.

Comments (14)
  1. RICH BADER says:


  2. Christian says:

    Rest in peace to my former Commanding Officer and a friend. You will be missed by many, but forgotten by none.

  3. Wade says:

    God Bless and thank you for service,,,,,,,,,,,

  4. Erica Freburger says:

    Robbie, you are awesome in all you did. I will never forget you. Your legacy will live one in all of us. My prayers and thoughts are with you and your family my friend.

  5. just sayin' says:

    And we’re still there because….

  6. Robertryan says:

    We’re still there because the’s who make the decisions to be there aren’t there themselves. Karzi is a thief, drug lord & a murderer. That county is as backwards as the stone age. Let em kill one another.

  7. Soldier says:

    My former Commander. RIP and we salute you>

  8. meeeeee says:

    Maj. Robert Marchanti… I did not know you but thank you for the ultimate sacrifice. I hope all will keep the men and women like Maj. Robert Marchanti will keep him and family in our thoughts/prayers. He has dome more for this country than most could dream. I salute you.

  9. Carolyn says:

    I served 16 months on a Kosovo mission with then, Capt Marchanti and he was always nothing but professional and just an all around good person. It was an honor serving with you, Major. God Bless your family in this time of sorrow.

  10. June Piper-Brandon says:

    God bless the family of Maj. Marchanti, thank you for making the world a better place and thank you for your service to this country.

  11. katelyn says:

    R.I.P – Mr. Marchanti – I remember you were my gym teacher in like 3rd grade! you were amazing everyone loved your class ! it has been 8 years since i seen you last! I will NEVER forget you !

  12. Jimmy says:

    MAJ Robert put God first then his Family and Country. May he rest in peace and his family have the strength to carry on. I salute a friend that i am honored to call a Brother. May God have mercy on this Country…

  13. Doretta says:

    God and your family always came first. Your children have grown up to be wonderful men and women. I have been blessed to know your family. Even though we are so sad to not have you here on this earth, I know you are getting to live in the Mansion that Jesus went back to prepare for you. Welcome into the joy of your salvation and to be able to sit at the feet of our Saviour!

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