Editor's note: President Obama will present Sal Giunta with the Medal of Honor award on Tuesday. Watch live on CNN TV and online.
COMBAT OUTPOST DURANI, Afghanistan — Their memories of the firefight are still searing, three years after it took place.
"The whole time frame lasted, I don't know, maybe two minutes, three minutes. Five or six lifetimes," U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Sal Giunta told CNN. "You can turn and see the muzzle flashes and the bullets coming out of the guns and it's not just one of them, not just 10 of them, it's more than that."
It was an October night in the part of eastern Afghanistan called the Korengal Valley, not far from the Pakistani border. Soldiers describe it as unlike other parts of Afghanistan where dust and bare rocks are everywhere. The Korengal is timber country, green interlaced with boulders. A treacherous terrain for U.S. paratroopers.
"Everything is hard," Sal Giunta told CNN Pentagon Correspondent Barbara Starr. "The rocks are hard. The people are hard. The vegetation is hard. Everything is sharp." FULL POST