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Local soldier and 11 others overcome ambush, receive awards

December 3rd, 2017

KABUL, Afghanistan – A local soldier was among twelve service members assigned to NATO Training Mission – Afghanistan who received awards today for actions taken Oct. 26 when their convoy was ambushed twice while traveling through Afghanistan’s Tangi Valley during a routine mission.
Venice native Army Spc. Tamara Becker and her team successfully overcame a 45-minute complex attack in which insurgents used rocket propelled grenades, small arms fire and improvised explosive devices.
Commander, NTM-A Lt. Gen. William B. Caldwell IV, presented six service members with Purple Heart Medals and Combat Action Badges; two service members with Purple Heart Medals and Combat Medical Badges; three service members with Combat Action Badges and one service member with the Combat Medical Badge.
“These men and women were put in a tight situation, reacted very well, did what they were supposed to do and are all here today,” said Caldwell. “It’s an honor for me to be a part of this ceremony and thanks for doing what you were supposed to do as a service member in the United States military.”
Purple Heart and Combat Action Badge awardees Army Pfc. Edward Barut, 1-21 Field Artillery Battalion, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Air Force Maj. Michael Epper, 866th Air Expeditionary Squadron.
Army Private 1st Class Marlon Gabriel, 1-21 Field Artillery Battalion, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Army Pfc. Jeremy Jenkins, 1-21 Field Artillery Battalion, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Army Spc. Roland Mosley, 1-21 Field Artillery Battalion, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Army Staff Sgt. Ryan Thiers, 1-21 Field Artillery Battalion, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Purple Heart and Combat Medical Badge awardees Army Spc. Tamara Becker, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Army Pfc. Laura Lefler, Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 1-21 Field Artillery, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Combat Action Badge awardees Army Spc. Samuel Applegate, 575th Forward Support Company, 1-21 Field Artillery, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Army 1st Lt. Jeremy Minarik, Alpha Battery, 1-21 Field Artillery, 41st Fires Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
Navy Lt. Cmdr. Robert Moran, Navy Expeditionary Combat Readiness Center, San Diego.
Combat Medical Badge awardees Army Pfc. Isiah Stewart, Bravo Company, 21st Combat Support Hospital, 1st Medical Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.
The Purple Heart is the oldest award still given to military members who have been wounded or killed while serving on or after April 5, 1917.
Combat Action Badges provide special recognition to service members who personally engage the enemy or are engaged by the enemy during operations. Combat Medical Badges provide special recognition to service members who provide medical support to ground combat arms while engaged in active ground combat.

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