Drooling on the Pillow

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Sgt. Paul R. Smith 

I read in the Times today that the army is awarding the first Medal of Honor since the 'Black Hawk Down' battle in Somalia and the first of the Afghanistan and Iraq campaigns.

Sgt. First Class Paul R. Smith, a combat engineer in the Third Infantry Division was killed on April 4, 2001. The morning after seizing a section of Baghdad Airport his unit was building a compound for prisoners and came under attack by a vastly superior force of Republican Guards. Sgt. Smith organized the defense, exposed himself by throwing grenades and firing rockets at a tower commanding their position and reloaded his machine gun three times before being overrun. His actions were responsible for 20-50 enemy casualties and saving the lives of 100 Americans.

According to the Times there have been 3,440 recipients, but only 842 since World War II, when the requirements were tightened. There are 125 living recipients of the award.

At the Congressional Medal of Honor Society's website there is comprehensive information about the award as well as a link to the army's Medal of Honor page which lists every recipient along with the story of each award.

I always liked the fact that if a corporal with the MoH walks into a room the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs stands and salutes.
Weblog Commenting and Trackback by HaloScan.com Listed on BlogShares