Friday, July 02, 2010

Fullbore Friday II: MOH Edition

A soldier who served in Afghanistan could be the first living recipient of the Medal of Honor since the Vietnam War.

News outlets in and around Cedar Rapids, Iowa, have reported that Staff Sgt. Sal Giunta, who is from that area, is believed to be the soldier being considered for the nation’s highest valor award. Giunta is currently stationed in Vicenza, Italy.
Giunta’s heroic actions are chronicled in a new book titled “WAR,” by Sebastian Junger.

A specialist at the time, Giunta deployed with the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team for its June 2007 to August 2008 tour in Afghanistan.

According to Junger’s book, late on Oct. 25, 2007, Giunta and his fellow soldiers from B Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, were on their way back from a major operation when they are ambushed by the enemy.

Giunta was the fourth soldier from the front; Sgt. Josh Brennan was walking point, according to “War.”

The enemy fired machine-gun and small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades from such close range that the Apache attack helicopters overhead were unable to help the soldiers on the ground.

“First Platoon is essentially inside a shooting gallery,” Junger wrote. “Within seconds, every man in the lead squad takes a bullet. Brennan goes down immediately, wounded in eight places.”

As the battle progressed, Giunta “sees two enemy fighters dragging Josh Brennan down the hillside. He empties his M4 magazine at them and starts running toward his friend,” according to the book.

“Giunta jams a new magazine into his gun and yells for a medic. Brennan is lying badly wounded in the open and Giunta grabs him by the vest and drags him behind a little bit of cover.”

Brennan doesn’t survive surgery, Junger wrote.

Giunta later talks to Junger about his actions. “I did what I did because that’s what I was trained to do,” he told Junger. “I didn’t run through fire to save a buddy – I ran through fire to see what was going on with him and maybe we could hide behind the same rock and shoot together. I didn’t run through fire to do anything heroic or brave. I did what I believe anyone would have done.”
Greyhawk has more.


xformed said...

"<span>I did what I believe anyone would have done."  What a man.  And humble.  A role model for those who would force their way in front of a camera, just to get some recognition.  On the upside, men and women like him are the hope of the future.  The real hope.

John said...

The heroes all say stuff like that.

Doesn't matter.  They WERE heroic, and deserve the recognition for their bravery.

I hope he is able to attend the MOH Society meetings to be with his peers.

Many other have done similar deeds, but without the recogntion, and they are heroes too.

THANK YOU and a very humble salute to all of them.

Outlaw 13 said...

Very nice to see and overdue IMHO.

Hopefully this is the first of several.  Lately I have been searching out the citations of those awarded the Silver Star and DSC during our current conflict, when compared with the MOHs awarded from past wars many are very similar in deed and action. 

Hopefully some of this will be rectified in the future.

ewok40k said...

he deserves it - period
and there are probably more like him we never hear of...

SNAnonymous said...

He certainly sounds like a deserving recipient.  I'm glad that there is finally a case for the MOH to be presented to a living soldier.