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Archive for the “Unsung Glory” Category

It’s Monday, so it’s time for another of LC Crunchie 0311’s excellent posts praising the heroes that the MSM wants us to forget about. In this case, the New York Slimes (may their stock value continue to plummet) took the “prize” for refusing to mention today’s hero with a single word.

But hey, we’re sure that the New York Seditionists have a staff full of Medal of Honor recipients (awarded for bravely not passing out from paper cuts or withstanding the unholy terror of brain freeze at the water cooler), so it’s probably no big deal to them.

Anyway, who cares about the New York Al-Qaeda Times? Today is about Lt Michael Murphy.

Take it away, LC Crunchie:


LT Michael “Mikey” Murphy
It was a warm summer afternoon of June 28, 2005 in the Konar province of Afghanistan. Laying in hiding on a ridge of the 10,000 foot tall Sawtalo Sar Mountain was a four man team of Navy SEALs led by 29 year old Lt. Michael Murphy from Patchogue NY. Also in Lt. Murphy’s SEAL Team 1 of elite warriors were Petty Officer 2nd Class Danny Dietz, 25, a communications expert from Colorado, Petty Officer Matt Axelson, 29, a scratch golfer from Cupertino CA known as the “perfect sniper”, and Petty Officer Marcus Luttrell, 29, a karate expert from Texas, whose back bore a tattoo of half of a trident, the SEAL insignia. His twin brother, also a SEAL, wore the other half.

Their mission, dubbed Operation Red Wing was to capture or kill a high ranking jihadist know as Ahmad Shah. Under the nom de guerre of Muhammad Ismail, the 30 something year old terrorist led a group of Pashtun fighters known as the “Mountain Tigers”.

Before it was over, the mission would result in the worst loss of life in the SEALs 45 year history, with a total of 11 SEALS killed in action, along with eight soldiers from the Army’s 16th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (SOAR), the “Nightstalkers”.

Give us more, O Emperor! »

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It’s Monday, so it’s time for this week’s installment of Unsung Glory, courtesy of LC Crunchie 0311.

This week’s story doesn’t involve charging into a hail of fire, but it’s no less heroic because of that. As a matter of fact, to one little Iraqi boy and his family, U.S. troops will forever be their biggest heroes.

Without further ado, we hand it over to Crunchie:

Heroism isn’t always about acts of courage on the field of battle. Very often though they do center on saving the life of another.

Everyone knows the Marine Corps official motto, Semper Fidelis. A lesser known unofficial motto, or perhaps description is a more appropriate word, is “No greater enemy, no better friend”. To quote Maj. Gene Duncan, “Civilians will never understand how a Marine can kill with one hand and caress with the other”. Marines have always had a soft spot for children, especially in the war zones they have found themselves in since 1775, which brings us to this weeks Unsung Heroes.

On March 9, 2007 Marines from Scout Platoon, HQ and Service Co., 4th Tank Battalion (coincidentally the same Battalion Crumb Crunchie is to be assigned to once he learns how to shoot a $180,000 TOW missile without killing himself) were traveling down a main road in the area of Fallujah when they stopped to investigate a possible IED. Marines posted on security watched through binoculars as a car further down the road lost control and flipped several times, finally landing on its roof.

Now there was a dilemma. They had a suspected IED, and a car crash. Was one, or both, a diversion for an ambush? Were they in the kill zone now? Was there a kill zone at the scene of the accident?

The patrol maintained its perimeter and soon determined that the IED was a false alarm. They then raced to the scene of the accident and set up perimeter security. Petty Officer 3rd Class Maurell D. Higginbottom was the 22 year old Corpsman assigned to the patrol. He began to asses the family who had been riding in the car and were now sitting in shock at the side of the road. Several Iraqis were also trying to help the family.

Then the father pointed at the overturned car and yelled “Baby!” Alarm bells went off in the Marines heads and several rushed to the car and began a frantic search for the missing child. They could not find one however.

Refusing to give up the search for an injured baby, Marines crowded around the overturned car and lifted it on its side, discovering the badly wounded body of a 5 year old boy. Staff Sgt. Juan Verdura, a 29-year-old platoon commander from Miami, grabbed the boy and yelled for Doc Higginbottom.

Doc Higginbottom immediately went to work, opening the boy’s airway and treating him for shock. The boy was breathing now but badly injured.

Sgt. Christopher P. Olloqui, the Patrol Commander called for a Medevac and within minutes a CH46 Sea Knight was inbound. All of the family had varying degrees of injuries from the accident and were taken aboard the chopper and flown to Camp Taqaddum Surgical Center.

S/Sgt Verdura flew with the family to Camp Taqaddum;

“When the doctor came out and told me everyone was stable I felt a wave of relief pass through me,” he said. “Looking at the little boy, who (resembled) my little nephew really hit home to me.”

Sgt. Olloqui, the 23 year old Patrol Commander, told Lance Cpl. Randall Little, a Combat Correspondent for Regimental Combat Team 6; “I’m very glad we were there to help these people. That’s the whole reason why we’re here.”

Considering the limited emergency services available in Iraq, if Sgt. Olloqui, Doc Higginbottom, and the rest of those Marines had not been there, it is very likely that the little boy would have died.

A minor and inconsequential incident in a large war. Unless you’re that family, or more so a 5 year old boy who is still alive thanks to the Unsung Heroes of HQ and Services Co., 4th Tank Battalion.

Note: To all the Dog Faces out there, I promise this will not be a Marine exclusive feature, it’s just harder to find acts of Army heroics :) Just kidding, I have plenty of ‘em.

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Our very dear friend, LC Crunchie 0311, was reading “No True Glory” by Bing West and, at the end, got to thinking:

What happened to telling the stories of our heroes? Everybody knows about famous, historical battles all the way back to Troy, and you would think that with the possibilities that today’s technology carries with it, it would be the easiest thing in the world to make sure that our warriors’ noble and heroic deeds would live on forever in the minds of generations present and future.

Of course, that doesn’t quite fit with the pussified “progressive” mindset that we’re all supposed to embrace today (not to mention that it most certainly wouldn’t fit with the political agendas of most of the “storytellers” with the biggest bullhorns, i.e. the MSM), Heaven forbid that we should ever glorify such brutal, dirty, un-nuanced business as fighting and dying! Best to just let those uneducated brutes go about their necessary business while the rest of us safely ignore the fact that there’s a dangerous, nasty world outside our comfy gates, and that we only reside in safety here thanks to the warriors whose deeds we so shamelessly ignore and refuse to give credit to.

There are snapshots of Slutney Spears’ snatch to plaster all over the front pages, after all.

Anyway, Crunchie had an idea and, true to form, it was annoyingly brilliant. So annoyingly brilliant, in fact, that I promptly had to steal it. And as if that wasn’t enough, I then proceeded to volunteer him to do the footwork required for its implementation while stealing all the credit for it. Oh yes, I am that evil! Except my little scheme might have worked better if I hadn’t just told you all about it.

Let’s have a weekly tribute to one of our heroes, let us share the story of a warrior of ours, because that is all a warrior craves. To be remembered. He wants no riches, he wants no personal glory, he just wants for him and his brothers in arms to be remembered. Well, we can do our bit to help there, can’t we?

So with a lot of help from Crunchie to whom the credit should go for the write-up, here’s our first hero:

SGT Aubrey McDade Jr., USMC, receives the Navy Cross for bravery “in the presence of great danger or at great personal risk and performed in such a manner that it set him apart from his or her shipmates or fellow Marines.”

At the time of his actions, SGT McDade was a machine gunner attached to 1st Plt, Bravo Co. 1st Bn. 8th Marines during Al Fajr, the second battle of Fallujah. It was November 11, 2004, one day after the 231st birthday of the Corps. That was a birthday the Marines in Fallujah, like so many Marines before them, had celebrated under fire. They still performed the cake cutting tradition whenever the ebb and flow of combat permitted, but with MRE pound cake instead of the more delicate and sweet fare of previous, more peaceful Birthday Balls.

And today, the day after the celebrations, the Hajis were planning to spoil the occasion. A sister company had been bogged down in an ambush, and Bravo Co. rushed up to help their comrades. On the way, they themselves came under fire from Hajis wearing Iraqi Security Forces uniforms, yet another violation of the Geneva Conventions that the liberals think should only apply to our forces, and within minutes three Marines had been severely injured by enemy fire.

Making things worse, the rest of Bravo Co. was still under heavy fire, fire intensifying furiously whenever somebody tried to move from cover to help their injured brothers. Without regard for his own safety, SGT McDade decided that he was going to go get ‘em, no matter what. His Gunny told him that, were he to be injured out there, they’d be unable to get him out of there immediately.

“That’s OK”, SGT McDade answered, “just don’t let me die out there.”

With that he stripped off all of his gear except for his Kevlar helmet, flak jacket and M16, and dashed into the fire swept alley, relying on speed to carry him the few hundred feet to the closest of the wounded Marines. Enemy fire was so intense that it was catching the dry bushes around him on fire as he stripped the gear off of Lance Corporal Andrew Russell, whose leg had been nearly severed by the enemy fire.

McDade slung Russell over his shoulder and ran the gauntlet of fire to his own position, enemy rounds cracking by every step of the way. “The rounds were getting real close to me, so I just tossed Russell as far as I could and just laid down in the road,” McDade later said. “When it lightened up, I drug him the rest of the way to the CCP.”

But there were still two more Marines out there, so McDade wasn’t done yet. After having miraculously survived an almost suicidal dash to get to his brothers once, he ran, dove, and crawled from cover to cover until he reached the next Marine, L/Cpl Christian Dominguez. “He was a little-bitty fellow, so I made him take off all of his gear, had him keep his weapon, put him on my shoulder and ran as fast as I could,” Sgt. McDade recalled.

Cpl. Nathan Anderson was the last Marine. By the time Sgt. McDade was ready to go back out for his third trip, tank support had arrived and had cleared a path to the grievously wounded Marine. Compared to the first two trips, the last was a cake walk. But it was unfortunately too late for Cpl. Anderson, who was already dead when Sgt. McDade reached him. Many of the Marines there with Sgt. McDade that day thought that Anderson was dead before McDade made his first run, but McDade insisted on going anyway.

McDade didn’t want the medal at first, because he knew that he would receive accolades for the medal, not for what he and his Marines had done. When he later accepted it, he made it clear that: “I got it for the Marines who have fallen and for all the Marines who have done great things and never been recognized. This award, I’m accepting it for me, but at the same time I’m accepting it for all the Marines who go before and after me.

”Now a drill instructor, McDade shares the story with his recruits, but while other DI’s tell McDade’s story early on, he himself waits until the Crucible.

“I don’t want them to listen to me because I have a medal,” he said. “I want them to listen to me because I’m a Marine.”

Semper Fi, SGT McDade. You’re a credit to the uniform, an invaluable asset to our nation and an example for all of us to follow.

And you are right. You are but one of many. May we never forget.

OO-RAH!

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