Army sergeant to get Medal of Honor for Afghanistan heroics
Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Arthur Petry has served six tours of duty in Afghanistan and two in Iraq.
June 1st, 2011
08:27 AM ET

Army sergeant to get Medal of Honor for Afghanistan heroics

An Army Ranger who lost his right hand while tossing an enemy grenade away from fellow soldiers in Afghanistan will be awarded the Medal of Honor, the U.S. Army announced this week.

Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Arthur Petry will be the second living recipient of the Medal of Honor from the Iraq and Afghan wars, according to the military. President Barack Obama will present the award to Petry on July 12.

"It's very humbling to know that the guys thought that much of me and my actions that day, to nominate me for that," Petry said, according to an Army News Service report.

Petry is being awarded the medal for actions on May 26, 2008, in Paktia, Afghanistan.

Already wounded by a bullet that went through both his legs, Petry picked up an enemy grenade that landed near him and two fellow Rangers and threw it back toward the enemy, according to the Army News Service report. The grenade detonated and amputated Petry's right hand. Petry applied a tourniquet to his wound and called for help.

"If not for Staff Sergeant Petry's actions, we would have been seriously wounded or killed," a fellow Ranger, Sgt. Daniel Higgins, wrote. Read the full Army News Service report on the battle.

Petry, now assigned to Fort Benning, Georgia, will be the ninth service member to be presented the Medal of Honor for actions in Afghanistan or Iraq. The other living recipient is Staff Sgt. Salvatore Giunta.

Petry, a father of four from Santa Fe, New Mexico, has served two tours of duty in Iraq and six in Afghanistan.

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Medal of Honor • Military • World
soundoff (536 Responses)
  1. redleg

    It's quite obvious that you never served but enjoy the freedoms that those of us who did, provide.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:32 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Farhad

    We should all Salute this man and redouble our efforts to bring a just end to these wars that put brave men like Sgt Petry in harms way. Can you imagine yourself as a father of 4 serving 6 combat missions?

    June 1, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Ellis

    dbarak is a wimp with a bat in his butt

    June 1, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  4. The Dude

    You served in the Civil war? Or how about the War of Independence.

    Those were the last wars that had anything to do with OUR Freedom.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Report abuse |
  5. ooktoo

    Just trying to understand this...if the grenade explosion amputated Sgt. Petry's right hand, wouldn't it have been close enough to kill him & the soldiers nearby? Obviously not...maybe the explosion occured after the grenade had left his hand? Salute & honor to a brave soldier.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Trulyamazed

    I am just amazed at the comments a person reads on here. Can't everyone just say "Hey Great Job?" and be proud of our soldier? Wow is all I can say.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Report abuse |
  7. redleg

    It's also quite obvious you are not a student of history.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Louis

    I haven't seen anything that he has written as being funny. Sometimes things like that are donated rather than disposed of.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  9. knucklehead

    I salute this young warrior.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Sid Hill, Starkville, Mississippi

    Does the US ever do stupid things? Of course. Has the US ever been involved in wars which we should have avoided? Certainly. Does this have anything at all to do with honoring the troops who fight when and where their country tells them to? NO!! A thousand times no.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:39 pm | Report abuse |
  11. tony

    I bet you have several awards from playing call of duty with your pale thin friends

    June 1, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Matt

    Wow, what a hero. Eight tours and this...we really owe everything to him as a nation.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lee

      The problem is we already owe everything to the Chinese. Someday we might not have enough to cover VA benifits to him or others who served.

      June 1, 2011 at 4:14 pm | Report abuse |
  13. sam

    keep telling yourself that, redleg. i can tell that being a murderer has had quite a toll on you and you need some means to justify your actions.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. dean IN

    Milton Olive from Chicago, a black American soldier jumped on a grenade thrown into his position and died of wound incurred, saving the lives of others around him. Awarded the Medal Of Honor, Vietnam.

    June 1, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
  15. dbarak

    @ Louis – Hands blown off in battle... donated? Are you related to Ellis?

    June 1, 2011 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
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