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    Truck Driver Receives Purple Heart

    Truck Driver Receives Purple Heart

    Courtesy Photo | CAMP TAJI, Iraq -- Gen. Mark E. Neill, left, who is the assistant division commander...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    3rd Infantry Division

    Division Support Brigade PAO

    CAMP TAJI, Iraq -- A truck driver with the Division Support Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division was awarded the Military Order of the Purple Heart, Aug. 11, in a ceremony held at the DSB Ministry Center.

    Staff Sgt. Khevin G. Smith, a heavy-wheel vehicle operator with the 104th Transportation Company, 87th Corps Support Battalion, DSB, was awarded the medal by Brig. Gen. Mark E. O'Neill, the assistant division commander for support for the 3rd Inf. Div.

    Although this is the award that nobody wants to get, said O'Neill, to be able to pin this award on a Soldier is a great joy.

    "It means the equipment, the training, and circumstance, which none of us get to predict or script, allowed him to be standing here with us."

    Smith, of Dallas, got the award for wounds received in action, April 20, when his convoy was ambushed on its way to Camp Liberty.

    Smith's Heavy Equipment Transporter was struck by a vehicle-borne explosive device. He also managed to evacuate his truck commander, Spc. Morris Smith, who was sitting in the passenger seat. The two of them were picked up by Sgt. Eric L. Martin, who had pulled his HET next to them as they exited their damaged truck.

    "The actions of Martin and the escorts from the 3rd Battalion, 117th Field Artillery Regiment, Alabama Army National Guard are the reason we're here, said Smith, whose unit deployed from Fort Benning, Ga. He praised God for their safety under fire.

    O'Neill said it was a blessing that Smith's equipment and training proved themselves. He also had advice for the Soldier.

    "You don't need to go get another one of those, said O'Neill. "One's enough."


    Date Taken: 08.15.2005
    Date Posted: 08.15.2005 14:35
    Story ID: 2720
    Location: TAJI, IQ

    Web Views: 399
    Downloads: 145