“This award was earned with a team, a team of our finest. This medal represents them. It represents us.”
Former Army Capt. William D. Swenson of Seattle, Washington, upon receiving the Medal of Honor last Tuesday, four years after risking his life in Afghanistan. President Obama awarded the Medal of Honor to Capt. Swenson during a ceremony in the East Room at the White House on Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013. Swenson was being awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions in a lengthy battle against the Taliban insurgents in the Ganjgal valley near the Pakistan border on Sept. 8, 2009, which claimed the lives of five Americans, 10 Afghan army troops and an interpreter.
Read the full story describing Capt. Swenson’s heroic actions at: army.mil.
Read about the Medal of Honor at history.army.mil/moh.html.
Watch a video below:
THE MEDAL OF HONOR:
- The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the United States government.
- It is bestowed by the President in the name of Congress on members of the United States Armed Forces who distinguish themselves through “conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States.”
- Due to the nature of its criteria, it is often awarded posthumously (more than half have been since 1941).
- Members of all branches of the armed forces are eligible to receive the medal, and there are three versions (one for the Army, one for the Air Force, and one for the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard).
- The Medal of Honor is bestowed upon an individual by the passing of a Joint Resolution in the Congress; and is then personally presented to the recipient or, in the case of posthumous awards, to next of kin, by the President of the United States, on behalf of the Congress, representing and recognizing the gratitude of the American people as a whole.
- Due to its honored status, the medal is afforded special protection under U.S. law.
- As the award citation includes the phrase “in the name of Congress”, it is sometimes erroneously called the Congressional Medal of Honor; however, the official title is simply the Medal of Honor. (from wikipedia)