18 July, 2008

"Normal Humans Wouldn't Do That"

Cpl. Ayers has reportedly been given a posthumous promotion and Bronze Star with V for his actions in the battle last weekend. He was at the observation post for the FOB, a position at which 7 of the 9 soldiers manning it died. He was apparently not the only soldier who fought that day with tremendous valor.

Stars and Stripes has a riveting, heartbreaking account of the battle as told by survivors now recovering at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center:

"I just hope these guys’ wives and their children understand how courageous their husbands and dads were," said Sgt. Jacob Walker. "They fought like warriors." [snip]

Cpl. Jonathan Ayers laid down continuous fire from an M-240 machine gun, despite drawing small-arms and RPG fire from the enemy. Ayers kept firing until he was shot and killed...

"It was some of the bravest stuff I’ve ever seen in my life, and I will never see it again because those guys," [wounded soldier] Stafford said, then paused. "Normal humans wouldn’t do that. You’re not supposed to do that — getting up and firing back when everything around you is popping and whizzing and trees, branches coming down and sandbags exploding and RPGs coming in over your head … It was a fistfight then, and those guys held ’ em off."

I imagine some additional places have been set at Fiddler's Green...