Son of area physician dies in Iraq roadside bombing
Marine 1st Lt. Nathan Krissoff, son of Truckee orthopedic surgeon Dr. William Krissoff and wife Chris, was killed Saturday in Iraq in a roadside bombing incident.
Krissoff, 25, died Dec. 9 from injuries sustained when the Humvee he was riding in during a routine patrol was bombed in al-Anbar province, Iraq, said Krissoff’s brother, Austin Krissoff.
“He never felt like he shouldn’t have been there (in Iraq),” said Austin Krissoff, 23. “He wanted to serve his country in one way or another.”
Nathan Krissoff told his brother during a Dec. 2 phone conversation that he was “excited about the job he was doing over there,” Austin Krissoff said.
Nathan Krissoff was a counterintelligence officer assigned to a reconnaissance battalion based in Okinawa, Japan. He was deployed in September with his division to al-Anbar province, Iraq.
Born in Truckee, March 29, 1981, Nathan Krissoff excelled as a student and an athlete. He sought adventure in life. Growing up at Northstar, the two brothers loved skiing the backside of the mountain on powder days, Austin Krissoff said, and shared a passion for whitewater kayaking, camping ” anything outdoors.
On a two-week leave in August, Nathan Krissoff joined his brother and a group of friends on a three-day backpacking trip to the Emigrant Wilderness, just north of Yosemite.
“It was one of those classic trips where time stands still,” Austin Krissoff said.
That trip was also the last time he saw his brother.
“We were best friends ” my right hand man,” he said. “He’d always push me to be a better man, and I’d push him.”
From “philosophical hot tub discussions” to sharing beers at a microbrewery in Buenos Aires, Argentina, he said his big brother was someone he looked up to and could relate to when discussing basic training with the Marines.
Austin Krissoff said he received a postcard Sunday ” the day after his brother’s death ” written by his brother, wishing him “Congratulations and welcome to the club.” The note referred to Austin Krissoff’s recent completion of basic training. He will most likely be commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant with the Marines later this week.
Deeply affected by the events of Sept. 11, Krissoff decided he wanted to join the fight in the global war on terror and joined the Marines in 2004, Austin said. After he was commissioned as a 2nd Lt. with the Marines, Krissoff completed three months of Human Intelligence training in order to gain more experience to pursue a career in counterterrorism with the CIA, Austin said.
Austin said Krissoff wanted to work with the CIA, abroad at an embassy or undercover. He was “a very intelligent guy” but “never put himself on a pedestal,” Austin said.
The Krissoff family, now living in Reno, is “hanging tough” in dealing with his death, Austin said.
A memorial service will be held Dec. 23 at 10 a.m. at Nightingale Hall at the University of Nevada, Reno. Graveside honors will follow at Mountain View Cemetery.
Krissoff lived his life by two quotes, Austin said: “Carpe Diem” and a prayer by Robert Louis Stevenson, “Lord give us the strength to encounter that which is to come, that we be brave in peril, constant in tribulation, temperate in wrath … and in all changes of fortune … down to the gates of death, loyal and loving one to another.”
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