Brian Alvarado, veteran and outspoken critic of Iraq War burn pits, dead at 43

Brian Alvarado, a Marine who was at the forefront of stepping up for veterans who served in the Iraq War and the controversy surrounding burn pits, has lost his health battles at the age of 43.

FOX 11 first met Alvarado during a story on the burn pits used during Desert Storm and Desert Shield, and the toxic effect on military personnel. He and his wife Rocio were outspoken on the matter and a voice for veterans.

An LA Times article further detailed his illness, saying that "he was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma of the neck and throat in 2007. He also has an inflammatory disease that causes muscle weakness and a rash, PTSD and hyperthyroidism from chemotherapy and radiation."

Rocio said Alvarado's cancer had returned last year. In that same year, he also lost his mother. Alvarado died on Jan. 22. 

The Alvarado family was active with the New Directions for Veterans Walk for Warrior events at the Westwood VA property. Alvarado loved fast sports cars and the car culture. He also volunteered his time in many ways.
Alvarado is survived by his wife Rocio and daughter Rihanna. He will be laid to rest on Feb. 22, with services starting in Huntington Beach and ending in Riverside. The service is billed as "one last salute."