Sgt. (then Cpl.) Dakota Meyer (left side) and Gunnery Sgt. (then-Staff Sgt.) Aaron Kenefick in Ganjgal Village, Kunar province, Afghanistan, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Meyer received the Medal of Honor.
Dakota Meyer’s unit, along with some Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers set out to engage Taliban forces, and to protect anti-Taliban village elders in Ganjgal. The Marines were told that they would not have immediate close air support, but that there was artillery support in the area.
As soon as they arrived, the task force was ambushed on three sides by over 100 Taliban militants — more than were originally estimated by intelligence reports.
Calls for artillery support were denied for fear of civilian casualties, and nearby helicopters were taking fire at a different location.
Upon learning that four of his team members were cut off, Meyer and another Marine commandeered an ANA truck and, under intense enemy fire, drove to their location.
Meyer would end up up making five trips to and from the battle site. Manning the machine gun, he killed a number of militants, some at almost point blank range, disrupting the Taliban attack, and taking pressure off of friendly forces.
During the trips, he and his driver evacuated two dozen ANA soldiers, many of which were wounded, and provided cover for other US Marines and ANA troops pinned by the Taliban.
Meyer eventually dismounted his vehicle and, on foot, went to an area the cut off servicemen were expected to be. He found their bodies, and prevented their capture by beating a Taliban insurgent to death with a rock. He was awarded the Medal of Honor two years later, on September 15, 2011.
Sgt. Aaron M Kenefick, USMC GY SGT On Sept 8, 2009, was ambushed by 100 to 150 Taliban forces in the Ganjgal Valley, Kunar Province Afghanistan. This tragedy is tied to two living Medal of Honor Recipients.
Kenefick was a member of a combined Marine and Afghan patrol that led the way into Ganjgal village to visit with village elders. As the patrol entered the village, it was ambushed.
Kenefick, took cover near a retaining wall and returned fire. When the team leader directed his Marines and the Afghan soldiers to attack and seize the house from which they were receiving fire, GY SGT Kenefick boldly led the Afghan soldiers forward under fire and cleared the house.
The enemy then attempted to encircle the teams position while subjecting the team to a hail of machine gun and rocket fire. Despite being pinned down, Kenefick fought with bravery and determination while demonstrating unwavering courage in the face of the enemy.
By his extraordinary guidance, zealous initiative, and total dedication to duty, GY SGT Kenefick reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service. He earned the Bronze Star with V.
The Giant Killer book & page honors these incredible war heroes making sure their stories of valor and sacrifice are never forgotten. God Bless our Vets!🇺🇸🇺🇸