It was announced on the Marines’ 231st birthday. Marine Cpl. Jason Dunham‘s story is so sad but amazing none the less:
(CNN) — President Bush announced on Friday that the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest military decoration, will be awarded posthumously to Marine Cpl. Jason Dunham.
In April 2004, Dunham was leading a patrol in an Iraqi town near the Syrian border when the patrol stopped a convoy of cars leaving the scene of an attack on a Marine convoy, according to military and media accounts of the action.
An occupant of one of the cars attacked Dunham and the two fought hand to hand. As they fought, Dunham yelled to fellow Marines, “No, no watch his hand.” The attacker then dropped a grenade and Dunham hurled himself on top of it, using his helmet to try to blunt the force of the blast.
Still, Dunham was critically wounded in the explosion and died eight days later at Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland.
“As long as we have Marines like Corporal Dunham, America will never fear for her liberty,” Bush said Friday as he announced that Dunham would receive the award. Bush spoke at the dedication of the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Virginia. (Watch announcement of award at museum — 1:27)
“His was a selfless act of courage to save his fellow Marines,” Sgt. Maj. Daniel A. Huff of the 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, was quoted as saying in Marine Corps News that April.
“He knew what he was doing,” Lance Cpl. Jason A. Sanders, 21, of McAllester, Oklahoma, who was in Dunham’s company, was quoted as saying by Marine Corps News. “He wanted to save Marines’ lives from that grenade.”
I am humbled yet so thankful that men such as Lt. Cpl Dunham still exist in this world. Read the rest of his story.