Friday, September 10, 2010

About Damn Time!

There have been several examples of uncommon valor from our forces during the last 10 years......culminating in some posthumous Medal of Honor awardees. Finally, a living soldier will receive this honor.

A young Army specialist, Salvatore A. Giunta, took a bullet to the chest, but was saved by the heavy plates of his body armor. Shaking off the punch from the round, he jumped up and pulled two wounded soldiers to safety, grabbed hand grenades and ran up the trail to where his squad mates had been patrolling. 

For his valor during that October 2007 mission, the White House announced Friday that the 25-year-old sergeant, of Hiawatha, Iowa, would become the first living service member to receive the Medal of Honor, the military’s most prestigious award, for action during any war since Vietnam. 

There, he saw a chilling image: Two fighters hauling one of his American comrades into the forest. Specialist Giunta hurled his grenades and emptied the clip in his automatic rifle, forcing the enemy to drop the wounded soldier. Still taking fire, he provided cover and comfort to his mortally wounded teammate until help arrived.
“It was one of the worst days of my life, and when I revisit it, it kind of guts me a little bit more every time,” the soldier, now a staff sergeant, said Friday.

President Obama said ‘thank you’ for what I did,” Sergeant Giunta said in an interview from his current post in Vicenza, Italy, after getting a call from the president. “My heart was pounding out of my chest, so much that my ears almost stopped hearing. I had my wife by my side. She was holding my hand. When she heard me say, ‘Mr. President,’ she gave me a squeeze.” 


Sal, I salute you!

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