America is the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave. We remain free because of the brave.
Thank you, thank you very much.
From the Marine Corp Times:
CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. — Few of these men had ever seen real shoot-and-kill combat.
But before they could search a suspicious vehicle and its occupants one summer morning in Iraq’s open western desert last year, the members of a quick-reaction platoon from 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion were facing down gunfire from several insurgents. In seconds, enemy rounds knocked down the platoon sergeant and fatally wounded one Marine, hit while running to another’s aid in the ensuing seven or eight minutes of gun-blazing combat on Aug. 2.
Valles doesn’t consider himself more special than any other Marine there that day.
“I did my job,” he said. “If I would have gone down, they would have done the same thing I did. They’re not going to leave me behind. This medal isn’t for myself. It’s definitely not for me. It’s to represent the Marines that were there that day and the one that is not here.
“I’m just wearing it, but really it’s them,” he added. “It’s totally them.”