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Afghanistan Army Vet Receives Medal of Honor

11-12-2015
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President Barack Obama awards a young Army captain with the Medal of Honor for saving the lives of his comrades in 2012.

Captain Florent A. Groberg, U.S. Army (Ret.) is recieving the nation's highest honor for battlefield bravery because he courageously tackled a suicide bomber in Afghanistan.

That act saved many of his comrades in the 4th Infrantry Division, where Captain Groberg served as the Personal Security Detachment Commander.

Click play to watch a clip of the ceremony.

Born in Poissy, France, Groberg became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2001, the same year he graduated from high school in Maryland, reports the Associated Press. He also competed in track and cross country at the University of Maryland before entering the Army in 2008.

President Obama said during the ceremony that what helped make Groberg a "great runner" during his student days at the University of Maryland also made him a "great soldier."
 
Groberg deployed to Afghanistan's Kunar Province in November 2009 and again in February 2012. He was helping lead an escort for a meeting with an Afghan provincial governor when his unit encountered the bomber. Groberg, with assistance from another soldier in the security detail, Sgt. Andrew Mahoney, tackled him to the ground where the bomber's vest detonated.

Four men were killed that day and Captain Groberg sustained a severe leg injury that would require 33 surgeries to save it.

Groberg said he shares the medal with the four who didn't get to come home alive.

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald recalls Groberg's reaction when he learned he would be a recipient of the award. Groberg said,  'This medal belongs to them. It's my mission to tell everyone thank you for recognizing me, but this does not belong to me. It belongs to them. That's how I'm coping with it mentally.'

Groberg is the 10th living service member from actions in Iraq or Afghanistan to be awarded the Medal of Honor.

 

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