Sep 23, 2010

Sergeant David Fresenius, an assistant team leader with 3rd Platoon, Bravo Company, 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, is awarded the Purple Heart by Brig. Gen. Joseph Osterman, 1st Marine Division (Forward) commanding general, aboard Camp Leatherneck, Sept. 23. The 23-year-old from Westminster, Calif., was hit in the top of his back’s protective Sapi plate during a small arms fire engagement in Trek Nawa, on June 21, 2010. The round lodged in his protective gear, just millimeters away from breaking skin and hitting his upper spine. After his corpsman attended to the wound, that left a baseball-sized welt in his upper back, a very lucky and determined Fresenius re-donned his gear, and got back in the engagement with the Taliban that lasted just over an hour. “It felt like I had been hit with a sledge hammer,” Fresenius said. “Once I realized I was okay, my only thoughts were to get back to the fight – to get back with my men.”

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1st Marine Division