Richard Marcinko, founding commander of U.S. Navy SEAL Team 6, died on Saturday at the age of 81, his son announced on Sunday.
“Last night, Christmas evening, we lost a hero, who’s also known as The Rogue Warrior, the retired Navy SEAL commander AND the creator of SEAL Team Six, my father, Richard Marcinko,” his son Matt Marcinko tweeted.
“Last night, Christmas evening, we lost a hero, who’s also known as The Rogue Warrior, the retired Navy SEAL commander AND the creator of SEAL Team Six, my father, Richard Marcinko,” Matt Marcinko wrote in a tweet on Sunday.
In a family statement released later on Monday, Nancy Marcinko, Marcinko’s wife, said he “quietly passed away at home due to a heart attack.”
“His legacy will live forever. The man has died a true legend,” he added.
Richard Marcinko, a combat veteran of the Vietnam War, was the first commanding officer of SEAL Team Six, the secretive unit formed in 1980 that would later carry out the operation that killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan in 2011.
“Few know of his soft and giving nature. Though he is gone, the mark he left will never fade. As a family, we acknowledge this is not just our loss and there are many of you mourning with us. We sincerely appreciate the warm thoughts and condolences.”
The National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Florida, remembered Marcinko in a Facebook post, saying he “played a very unique part in SEAL history, leaving a legacy like no other.”
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