The U.S. Marine Corps' top leader has recommended a Marine from Kentucky for the Medal of Honor, CNN has learned.
Dakota Meyer is only 22 years old, but he's already seen enough for any person's lifetime. He was in Afghanistan's Kunar Province in September 2009 when he repeatedly ran through enemy fire to recover the bodies of fellow American troops.
"I was a failure," Meyer told CNN. "My guys died. That was my whole team."
The Marines don't see it that way. CNN has learned from a Defense official with knowledge of the award process that just before he retired, former U.S. Marine Commandant Gen. James Conway recommended Meyer for the nation's highest award for bravery.
Meyer has left the Marines and is back home in central Kentucky. He's only been told about the medal recommendation through unofficial channels.
And because of strict Department of Defense rules, the Pentagon does not comment on medal recommendations until the process is complete.
The commandant's recommendation is not the final step. It next goes to the secretary of the Navy, then the secretary of defense and finally to the president. At any point, the award could be changed to the Navy Cross, the Silver Star or another medal for valor.
If Meyer does win the award, he would become only the second Marine to earn the Medal of Honor from the current wars and only the second living Medal of Honor recipient in the past 36 years.
On November 16, President Barack Obama will present the Medal of Honor to Army Staff Sgt. Sal Giunta for heroic actions he took in Afghanistan's Kunar Province in 2007.
According to the Marine Times, which first reported the award recommendation for Meyer, then-Cpl. Meyer ran four times through a hail of enemy fire to recover the bodies of three fallen Marines and a Navy medic.
Meyer didn't want to discuss details of the incident because it's still difficult to think about.
"I sleep on it every night."
It's impossible to know how long it will take for the entire process to be completed. Meyer said if he is awarded the Medal of Honor, "it's for my guys, they gave the ultimate sacrifice."
As the Public Information Officer for the Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs, I strongly urge CNN to refrain from using the verb "win" in reference to military service medals and especially medals of valor. Although they are "awarded" to the recipients, the recipients EARN those medals. Please use the verbs "earn," "receive" or "awarded." Do NOT use the verb "win."
Thank you very much.
Public Information Officer
Kentucky Department of Veterans Affairs
All you losers on this blog crack me up with your stupid conspiracy theories. GOD, do any of you work?? Or is your employer stupid????
Navy Hospital Corpsman, not Navy Medic!
Hey Phunnie boy,use your own name! I'll do my own blogging,thank you!!!
Well Done Marine! S/F
Hey Phunnie boy,use your own name! I'll do my own blogging,thank you.
That's not real belly-dancing, it's the local version of a strip routine.
But just a note on this article. The Medal of Honor is not "won," it is awarded and earned.
All this right-wing bla-bla-bla does get old after a while.
Who asked for your opinion stop commenting on my postings you creep.
Thanks for posting the picture,Dirty Paki. That reminds the NATO forces of they're fighting for and boosts their morale at the same time.
Don't forget Jesse that the NATO forces are fighting for Afghanistan's natural resources(such as over$1Trillion worth of minerals) plus the Trans Afghan Pipeline into Central Asia so that American big business can get even bigger making the CEO's rich along with the right-wing thugs in Washington.
How right you are,Dan. Thank you.
This ought to turn the troops on over there! OOH-LA-LA!!!
This Medal is not given for accomplishing a task or returning to base safely. It is awarded for showng the highest form of bravery under enemy fire. The Marines do not leave their dead behind – we have seen what the enemy there likes to do with dead bodies. Perhaps it will give the living some peace of mind to know that the sacrifice of those Marines and their Navy medic are being honored by their countrymen.
Carole, I'm with you. YABBA-DABBA-DOO!!!
very well written. Agree .with you .
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