Rory Brandon Aguilera, 38, passed away on July 22 in Los Angeles. Born in Fullerton, California on August 14, 1974, Rory was a lifelong southern Californian and a 1993 graduate of Junipero Serra High School. He will be remembered for the unwavering loyalty and love he showed his family and friends. He was the epitome of a gentleman who was committed to serving others. Rory's sense of duty led him to enlist in the United States Navy. He served with distinction as a Corpsman in the 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, receiving the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal for his heroic and meritorious service during a 2004 conflict in Al Ramadi, Iraq. He was also awarded the Navy and Marine Achievement Medal, Combat Action Ribbon, and the National Defense Service Medal, in addition to other citations for his exemplary service. Rory's platoon commander praised him, stating that "I could not ask for a better man to be next to me, whether in battle or everyday life." Rory worked most recently with The World Protection Group Inc. at ICM Partners in Los Angeles and The Brig in Venice, with many of his colleagues and supervisors recognizing his strong character and dedication to those around him. Rory is survived by his father, Larry Aguilera, mother, Risa Zavala, maternal grandmother, Doris Zavala, brother, Robert Aguilera, sister, Lorae Heffner, her husband Hunt and two nieces, Harper and Reiss and numerous aunts, uncles, and cousins. He is preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Pete and Natividad Aguilera, his maternal grandfather, Salvador Zavala, and younger brother, P.J. Aguilera. Visitation will be held the evening of August 1st at Lighthouse Memorials & Receptions - McMillan Center, 1016 West 164th St., Gardena, CA (310)792-7580. Burial will be held at Los Angeles National Cemetery and Memorial Service at Junipero Serra High School on August 2nd. Arrangements will be made through Lighthouse Memorials & Receptions at (310) 792-7580 or

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  1. My Dear and Close friend!

    From the moment we worked together and the time that we spent together I thank you! I celebrate your life and your dedication and your willingness to talk with me about so many different things. From your days when we worked together at Sportsmart, to watching you play football at El Co, to watch you leave and return from being Active Duty, I will miss you. I pray for you and your family and I show you and your spirit nothing but the continued unconditional love and respect that we have always had for each other. May you rest in peace my friend and continue to feel my friendship as I try to understand. I just want one more day, one more hug, one more smile, one more word, one more text. I will cherish all that I was able to have and take my time to heal as I wish you rest with peace and serenity. Much Love and Respect!

  2. You will always be my endless love… You will forever live in me, and the love you gave me will always be felt. I will remember your beautiful smile and the look in your eyes everyday.

  3. Rory,

    Words cannot express the feeling of loss I have. From the days in the field, to our time in Ramadi…

    Keep those Marines in check and I’ll see you when I see you.

    May you rest in peace my old friend.


  4. I first met Doc Aguilera when he reached out to me to give condolence for the loss of my son in combat. I could see by the pain in his eyes that he, too, felt the loss very deeply. His words were filled with compassion, and brought me comfort. Oh that I might bring some of that comfort now to Risa, and Larry, and his family…do you know how many lives he touched? Clearly he was passionate about serving his brothers…I am honored to have met Doc Aguilera, and no doubt Sean met him at Heaven’s door. May God keep your family held tightly in His loving embrace and let peace fall upon your soul.

  5. I want to share with all of you who I was to the one you call Doc. My close friend gave me the nickname “DOC”. I think he would want other’s to know that the reason he gave me this nickname was I was the one he was seeing when he returned from active duty. Rory’s words not mine, “I was the Doc out there and you are my ‘Doc’ for what we discuss.” He did reach out and I have been there as he reached out for years. Please take the example and try to make a decision to accept what you can do for yourself if you are going through what he was before and after he returned. I am by career a social worker and by education I carry a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology and I am a Licensed Marriage Family Therapist and a Board Certified Professional Counselor. I spoke to a few of you yesterday. We all wore blue ribbons for PTSD. I encourage you to take the step, Rory did and I cherish him for talking to me and feeling safe with me enough to share all that he did. Do to our friendship he saw me as a friend, however he felt safe to speak to me because he knew, I understood all aspects of the Military lifestyle and how to keep it private. It was not offical treatment because we have always been friends, so he nicknamed me “His DOC”. Thank you my friend for all the faith that you gave to me in walking with you through so much! I know it was not easy, but thank you for taking the step. I cherish you and Love ALWAYS!

  6. Dearest cousin I know that u probably barely remember me but ivwish I had got to know very proud and thankful of what you have done for our country .am proud that you are a part of my family I love you and may you rest in peace with the angels in heaven your cousin Aaron Aguilera

  7. Dear Aguilera and Zavala Families,

    I am sorry to hear about the loss of your loved
    one. Although, I don’t know your family personally, I surely empathize with
    what you may be feeling; as I have also lost loved ones in death.
    Thankfully, our Creator, has lovingly provided a means for us to see our dead
    loved ones again and cope with our pain the meantime. The scriptures tell us at
    John 5:28,29, “Do not marvel at this because the hour is coming when all
    those in the memorial tombs will hear my voice and come out.” Isn’t that a
    comforting promise? Other scriptures point to this happening in the very near
    future. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. Take care.

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