Injured Marine checks in with family |

Injured Marine checks in with family

by Sheila Gardner

Lance Cpl. Miguel Angel Melara, 19, called his family in the Gardnerville Ranchos early Saturday to say that he was recovering from a shrapnel wound and was back in combat in Iraq.

Melara, a 2003 graduate of Douglas High School, is stationed in Fallujah and was wounded two weeks ago when a bomb exploded near his platoon.

“He told us he was doing good,” said his mother, Maria Melara. “His leg did get hurt. He has little pieces of metal in his lip, forehead and neck.”

Junior and Maria Melara spoke to their son at 1 a.m. Saturday.

“That’s the time he usually calls,” she said. “It was incredible to talk to him. It felt good.”

The Melaras were notified Nov. 16 that Miguel had been injured and were anxious to hear from him.

He was awarded a Purple Heart and offered the chance to leave Iraq, but he elected to stay.

She said her son said his hearing was suffering from the bombs and rocket missiles being fired in the battle for Fallujah.

He is scheduled to leave Iraq in January.

“But we don’t know for sure,” she said.

Melara is attached to the 3rd Battalion from Camp Pendleton.