Marine Awarded Medal of Honor, Saved 36 Soldiers During Afghan Firefight

1 min read
White House photo: Pete Souza

Marine Corps Sgt. Dakota Meyer, who saved 36 of his fellow soldiers’ lives during an ambush in Afghanistan, was awarded the Medal of Honor Thursday.

Meyer received his medal at a White House ceremony, with President Barack Obama draping the blue ribbon around his neck.

Meyer, a native of Columbia, Ky., was part of a U.S. team training Afghan security forces when they were ambushed by insurgents on Sept. 8, 2009 in eastern Afghanistan.

Meyer killed a number of insurgents and kept returning to rescue U.S. and Afghan troops under attack. Meyer was wounded by shrapnel in the attack, but saved 13 U.S. soldiers and 23 Afghan soldiers in the process.

“Through all those bullets, all the smoke, all the chaos, [Meyer] carried them out one by one – because as Dakota says, that’s what you do for a brother,” the commander in chief said.

Meyer is the third living service member to receive the Medal of Honor for actions during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Army Staff Sgt. Salvatore Giunta received the medal Nov. 16, 2010. Army Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Petry received the medal July 12.

Click here to watch the full ceremony.

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