News: Fort Bliss Soldier awarded 2nd Purple Heart
Story by Staff Sgt. Christina Turnipseed
FORT BLISS, Texas -- Staff Sgt. Michael P. Dianda from 1st Battalion, 37th Infantry, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division was awarded his second Purple Heart Medal, at the Ready First Brigade Headquarters on Biggs Army Airfield, Texas, by the Commanding General of Fort Bliss, Maj. Gen. Dana J. H. Pittard, Aug. 6.
His first medal was awarded in 2007.
“On February 23, 2010, while out on patrol in Iraq, Dianda was struck in the chest and was wounded severely but he still thought of the safety of others first,” said Pittard. “Today is a blessing and I am thankful you are with us today.”
His wife Erica Dianda, stated, we wanted him to get out after the first time he was wounded but he loved the Army so much he insisted on staying so we supported him.
Michael’s father Paul Dianda stated “The worst part was seeing him with tubes and he couldn’t walk but now he can walk. So as long as he’s alright I don’t mind him staying active”.
The Purple Heart is a United States military decoration awarded in the name of the President of the United States to those who have been wounded or killed while serving on or after April 5, 1917 with the U.S. military.
“You don’t look forward or try to get this type of award but it is a great feeling,” said Dianda.
His wife said, “From this day we will take it day-by -day and whether he wants to stay or get out I’ll be by his side. I just thank God he came home alive.”