CAMP PENDLETON, CA, UNITED STATES
MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. - Staff Sgt. Jason White, a counterintelligence and human intelligence collector with CIHUMANT Company, 1st Intelligence Battalion, received the military’s fourth highest combat award during a ceremony at Camp Pendleton, Calif., April 6.
White received the combat distinguishing “V” device, for valor, with his medal.
White, 34, from Austin, was selected for the award for heroic service in connection with combat operations against the enemy in support of Operation Enduring Freedom from Aug. 2, 2010, to Feb. 8, 2011, according to the award’s citation.
White conducted over 100 combat patrols and collected critical detailed information on enemy networks throughout the Marjeh district.
“He’s all about mission accomplishment,” said Staff Sgt. Alejandro Diaz, with 1st Intelligence Battalion, who has known White for four years and was with him for part of their deployment in 2010. “He’ll find a way to get things done if at all possible.”
White’s efforts resulted in the discovery of ten weapon caches, 12 improvised explosive device locations and led to the capture or elimination of 35 insurgents. During one of the patrols, he led his Marines through six hours of intense compound-to-compound fighting after his team suffered two casualties.
“He’s not going to tell you he did anything special because that’s how he is, but he definitely deserved it,” said Staff Sgt. Brandon Bell, with 1st Intelligence Battalion, who met White in 2009 and served on the same team with him during their deployment in 2010. “He’s got three combat “V”’s on his chest for different things he’s done. That was a long day, and he took command and controlled everything that was going on.”
While under attack, White called for fire on enemy positions and provided medical care to two wounded Marines. He called for a medical evacuation and carried a wounded Marine to the extraction point.
White was pinned with the Bronze star award by his uncle, James Harvey White.
“It’s inspiring,” Jason said. “It forces you to reflect back on the actions of the day and the Marines you were surrounded by. I was surrounded by some top-notch Marines, several of who didn’t make it back alive.”
One of the Marines White attributes to his being able to receive the award is Lance Cpl. Joshua Twigg, who was killed in combat action Sept. 2, 2010.
“Without his actions, there’s a group of us who wouldn’t be here today,” White said. “My receiving the award is a direct reflection on his actions which allowed me to do what I did. The Marines that day were flawless in their actions and abilities.”
White’s mother, Dianne, his stepfather, Charles Abernathy, and Marines he has served or deployed with joined him at the ceremony.
“I feel very fortunate that I’m able to receive the award in the presence of my friends, family and fellow Marines,” White said.
White is leaving the Marine Corps this year to return to Texas, where he is already involved in community service and charity work through a jazz club he has recently opened.
||CAMP PENDLETON, CA, US
||AUSTIN, TX, US
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