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Old 04-08-2008, 08:10 PM   #1
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No Greater Love

The time you won your town the race
We chaired you through the market-place;
Man and boy stood cheering by,
And home we brought you shoulder-high.

To-day, the road all runners come,
Shoulder-high we bring you home,
And set you at your threshold down,
Townsman of a stiller town.

(“To An Athlete Dying Young” by A.E. Housman)

Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Monsoor

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Old 04-08-2008, 08:25 PM   #2
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To An Athlete Dying Young is one of my all time favorite poems.

What Michael Monsoor did was unthinkable (in a good way). You can't teach people to be like that. May he RIP.

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Old 04-09-2008, 07:39 AM   #3
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NY Times

April 9, 2008
Bush Gives Medal of Honor to Slain Navy Seals Member

WASHINGTON — President Bush on Tuesday awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously to a member of the Navy Seals who threw himself on a grenade in 2006 to save his comrades in Iraq.

The president presented the award, the nation’s highest military honor, to the parents of the Petty Officer Second Class Michael A. Monsoor, 25, in a ceremony at the White House.

“The Medal of Honor is awarded for an act of such courage that no one could rightly be expected to undertake it,” Mr. Bush said, adding that those who knew Petty Officer Monsoor were not surprised he had made the sacrifice.

He was the first member of the Navy and third member of the armed forces to receive the award for actions in Iraq. In October, a fellow member of the Seals, Lt. Michael P. Murphy, received the honor posthumously for his actions in Afghanistan.

Petty Officer Monsoor saved two other members of the Navy Seals and three Iraqi Army soldiers when he dived on the grenade in September 2006.

He was on a rooftop in Ramadi with a sniper security team during an early morning operation when the episode occurred. The snipers had shot at insurgents, killing one and wounding another, according to the Navy. After that, a nearby mosque broadcast pleas for insurgents to attack coalition forces.

A grenade was later lobbed onto the roof where the sniper team was positioned and hit Petty Officer Monsoor in the chest before dropping to the ground. Mr. Bush said he could have escaped, but instead threw himself on the grenade.

“In that terrible moment,” Mr. Bush said, “he had two options — to save himself, or to save his friends. For Mike, this was no choice at all. He threw himself onto the grenade, and absorbed the blast with his body.”

He died 30 minutes later, the Navy said.

Nearly 3,500 Medals of Honor have been distributed, according to the military. The award was created during the Civil War. The criteria for being awarded the medal include acting above and beyond the call of duty.

Petty Officer Monsoor has already posthumously received a Bronze Star for “his extraordinary guidance, zealous initiative and total dedication to duty” during his deployment to Iraq from April to September 2006 and a Silver Star for saving a comrade during his Iraq deployment. In that case, he pulled a wounded member of the Seals from the middle of a street to safety while under enemy fire.

On Wednesday, Petty Officer Monsoor will be inducted into the Pentagon Hall of Heroes, and his parents, Sally and George Monsoor, will receive a flag for Medal of Honor recipients at the Navy Memorial.

The third of four children, Petty Officer Monsoor, who grew up in Garden Grove, Calif., played tight end for his high school football team. He liked to snowboard and spearfish. Mr. Bush said Petty Officer Monsoor had asthma as a child and “strengthened his lungs by racing his siblings in the swimming pool.”

“He worked to wean himself off his inhaler,” Mr. Bush said.

Petty Officer Monsoor entered the Navy in 2001 and joined the Seals in 2004.

President Bush presented the Medal of Honor to George and Sally Monsoor, parents of Petty Officer Monsoor.

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Old 04-09-2008, 09:02 AM   #4
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Originally posted by U2democrat
You can't teach people to be like that. May he RIP.
That's so true.

My heart goes out to them.
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Old 04-09-2008, 07:39 PM   #5
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It's the stories like this that really make me despise this war more and more with each passing day.
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