Widow of Marine fallen in Kabul will receive home from charity

Pregnant wife of US Marine Rylee McCollum, who was killed in Afghanistan suicide bomb attack, will receive mortgage-free home from charity

  • US Marine Rylee McCollum, who was killed in a suicide attack at Kabul airport, left behind a pregnant wife 
  • Tunnels to Towers announced they were building a home for Jiennah McCollum, 20
  • She married Marine Corps Lance Rylee McCollum, 20, in February, and their baby is due this month
  • Tunnels of Tower was founded in honor of a firefighter who lost his life on 9/11
  • The charity gifts homes and pays off mortgages for spouses and children of service members who die in the line of duty 

The pregnant widow of one of the 13 US service members fallen in the August 26 attack in Kabul will receive a mortgage-free home from a charity.  

The Tunnels to Towers foundation will gift the house to Jiennah McCollum, 20, wife of the late Marine Corps Lance Rylee McCollum. 

McCollum, from Wyoming, who died at the age of 20, had married his wife recently. 

His life was cut short by an ISIS-K suicide blast in Afghanistan, three weeks before his baby was due. 

The Marine had been helping evacuate people at a checkpoint in Kabul’s airport when the bomb went off.  

He was deployed to Afghanistan from Jordan, and was expected home in October. 

The foundation could possibly build more homes for the families of the other 12 fallen service members.

Frank Siller, Chairman of the charity Tunnels to Towers told Breitbart News: ‘We’re building mortgage-free homes for Gold Star Families, and that includes any of the 13 that left behind a young family. 

‘And we do know one of them – his wife is pregnant and will be giving birth shortly,’

‘We are going to build her a mortgage-free house. And rest assured, we are going to take care of any Gold Star Family that fits that criteria,’ added Siller. 

The wife of Marine Corps Lance Rylee McCollum, Jiennah McCollum will be given a house by Tunnels of Towers, a charity who supports spouses and children of service members who have died in the line of duty 

McCollum was manning a checkpoint at Kabul’s Airport, where he was helping evacuate people 

Flag-draped caskets with the bodies of the 13 US fallen troops line the inside of a C-17 Globemaster II August 29, prior to a dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base

The young widow is now left to raise her child without her husband (Pictured: Gigi’s sonogram photo shared on Facebook May 18)

McCollum, who was sent to Afghanistan as evacuations started, is was killed while manning an airport checkpoint at the time of the suicide bombing.

The ISIS-K suicide bomber killed 183 people at Kabul airport.

McCollum, who graduated from Jackson Hole High School in Wyoming in 2019 before joining the US Marine Corps, had married Gigi in February of this year when the couple eloped in Vegas. 

Frank Siller and his family started the Tunnel to Towers foundation after his brother, Stephen Siller, lost his life saving victims and helping fellow firefighters on 9/11. 

‘His story is one of great pain and great sacrifice, but he came out the other side to help. 

He was originally from Wyoming, but went to California for training, where he met Jiannah McCollum 

Jiennah and Rylee McCollum’s baby is due this month. The marine was expected to return home on October from Afghanistan 

Frank Siller, CEO and Chairman of Tunnels to Towers, said the 13 US service members fallen in Afghanistan were heroes

‘Our family wanted to come out the other side of that tunnel as well and to make sure that we are there to help these other families that are feeling the same thing that we felt,’ Siller told Breitbart.  

The name of the charity honors his brother’s heroic last journey- He walked through the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel to get to Ground Zero. 

The charity helps the partners and children of service member who die in the line of duty, by giving them homes and paying off mortgages.

They also give smart homes to injured veterans.  

Siller called the 13 service members fallen in Afghanistan heroes, and added that McCollum’s wife deserved to have the home.

Family members of the 13 victims have experience a national outpouring of support after the deaths of their loved ones.  

A GoFoundMe account created for McCollum’s child just a day after his death has raised $650,000.    

McCollum, who graduated from Jackson Hole High School in Wyoming in 2019 before joining the US Marine Corps, had married Gigi in February of this year when the couple eloped in Vegas.

His mother-in-law, Jill Miller Crayton, said her 20-year-old daughter was ‘crushed’ after learning the heartbreaking news. 

Benjamin Arlotta, a family friend of the McCollum told DailyMail.com that ‘heads should roll’ over the disastrous U.S. exit and that the young soldier’s family is ‘absolutely broken.’

The Wyoming-born Marine’s wrestling coach and close family friend told DailyMail.com that even in diapers McCollum would stand watch on his porch with a toy rifle; first said he wanted to be a Marine aged eight; and signed up on his 18th birthday.

McCollum moved to California for training where he met Gigi, who remains in the San Diego area. 

Cheyenne McCollum, Rylee’s sister, told DailyMail.com her brother had wanted to be a Marine since he was a toddler.

‘Rylee was an amazing, man with a passion for the Marines. He was a son, a brother, a husband and a father with a baby due in just 3 weeks,’ she said.

‘He wanted to be a marine his whole life and carried around his rifle in his diapers and cowboy boots.’

A Taliban fighter stands guard at the site of the August 26 twin suicide bombs, which killed scores of people including 13 US troops, at Kabul airport on August 27, 2021

Backpacks and belongings of Afghan people who were waiting to be evacuated are seen at the site of the August 26 twin suicide bombs. At least 92 Afghans died in the attack 

 The 13 US service members killed in the Kabul blast

Navy Corpsman Maxton Soviak, 20

 Navy Corpsman Maxton Soviak, 20

Lance Corporal David Lee Espinoza, 20 

Lance Corporal Rylee McCollum, 20 

Lance Corporal Jared Schmitz, 20 

Lance Corporal Kareem Nikoui, 20 

Sgt. Nicole Gee, 23 

Lance Corporal Dylan Merola, 20 

Sgt. Johanny Rosario, 25 

Lance Corporal Hunter Lopez, 22 

Staff Sgt. Taylor Hoover, 31 

Staff Sgt. Ryan Knauss, 23 

Corporal Daegan Page, 23 


Corporal Humberto Sanchez, 22 

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