Obama presents Medal of Honor to Marine who jumped on grenade
2023/07/26

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'Your heroism will inspire for generations': Obama presents Medal of Honor to fearless Marine, 24, who lost an eye and part of his jaw when he jumped on a grenade to shield his comrade

Kyle Carpenter shielded his friend from the blast on a rooftop in the Helmand province in November 2010 - and both men survived He lost his right eye and most of his teeth, suffered a shattered jaw and broke his arm in multiple places and has undergone 30+ surgeries since As Obama presented him with the award at a White House ceremony, he paid tribute to him as 'the best example of what you want in an American' He added that Kyle proudly wore his scars as a sign of his service - and admitted they were a hit with women He earlier said he is not comfortable with the award, knowing that many of his comrades died or suffered injuries without recognitio

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President Obama today presented the Medal of Honor to a Marine who lost an eye and most of his jaw after fearlessly shielding a comrade from a grenade blast in Afghanistan - and told him that his heroism 'will inspire for generations'.

Retired Corporal William 'Kyle' Carpenter, 24, from Flowood, Mississippi, received the nation's top military award in the East Room of the White House, becoming the eighth living recipient for actions in Afghanistan or Iraq.

It comes nearly four years after he threw himself on top of a grenade to save his friend, Lance Cpl. Nicholas Eufrazio, while they stood guard on a rooftop in the Helmand province in November 2010.

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'Anybody who has had a chance to get to know this young man, you're not going to get a better example of what you want in an American or a marine,' Obama said at the ceremony.

A hero honored: President Obama presented Retired Corporal William 'Kyle' Carpenter, 24, with the Medal of Honor on Thursday - the nation's top military award - for his service in Afghanistan

Proud of his scars: Carpenter lost his right eye and suffered multiple other injuries when he jumped on a grenade to save a comrade in the Helmand Province in 2010. He has since been fitted with a glass eye

'If any American seeks a model of the strength and resilience that defines us as a people, I want you to consider Kyle.

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.. Kyle, you not only saved your brother in arms, you displayed heroism in a blink of an eye that will inspire for generations.'

Carpenter had been in Afghanistan for just five months when enemy forces, hidden behind walls, lobbed three grenades into Carpenter's patrol base. One of the grenades injured an Afghan National Army soldier, the second did not detonate and the third landed close to Carpenter and Eufrazio.

Carpenter, who was working as a machine gunner, threw himself between the grenade and Eufrazio to shield him. The blast deflected down, with Carpenter absorbing most of the explosion.

'The man you see before you today should not be alive today,' Obama said at the ceremony. 'Hand grenades are one of the most awful weapons of war... If one lands nearby you have mere seconds to find coverage... Up close it's almost certain death.'

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