Eric W. Herzberg was born at Madigan Army hospital at Fort Lewis, Washington. His father, Eric Herzberg, was an Army officer at the time. An athlete, a fan of Irish and patriotic country music, an avid video gamer and rugby player, Eric loved his country and his Catholic faith. He was 20 years old when he died. Eric is survived by his mother, Gina Barnhurst; father, Eric Herzberg; older sister, Katie and younger brother, Matthew. Eric and Matthew were best friends for his entire life.
As an athlete, he always gave 110% and was a coach's dream. He played soccer, football, rugby and wrestling, and was nicknamed "The Iron Curtain" in soccer for his defensive skills.
When the United States was attacked on September 11, 2001, Eric started to discuss joining the military in earnest. He wanted to make a difference and help prevent these attacks from happening again. His early intentions were to join the Army and become an Airborne Ranger. He wanted to be part of the elite. He soon changed his mind and decided he wanted to join the Marine Corps. He signed an early intent letter and began working out with other future Marines every Saturday during his junior year in high school.
His Roman Catholic faith also guided his decision to join the Marine Corps and helped him convince his mother of the surety of his vocation. He felt his desire to serve in the military was a "calling." After high school graduation, Eric finally joined the Marine Corps. He announced his intention to "go to Iraq and be in the front lines so I can make a difference." Eric was assigned to his regular unit as a machine gunner with the 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force headquartered in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Eric deployed to Iraq on July 14, 2006. He was killed October 21, 2006 "while conducting combat operations in Al Anbar province" and was a victim of "hostile fire" according to the official U.S. Department of Defense statement.
The Herzberg family is supporting the Eric W. Herzberg Memorial Scholarship fund through Dog Tag Legacy Fund. The scholarship is awarded each year to deserving well rounded students in academics, athletics and community service. It is awarded in remembrance of Marine Lance Corporal Eric W. Herzberg, a Severna Park High School graduate who gave his life in service to the United States.