Blocked Live Grenade: Hero to Receive Medal of Honor

Pam WrightLife

Share this Post

An Afghanistan war veteran, who threw himself between a live grenade and a fellow Marine, will receive the medal of honor from President Barack Obama next month.

Retired Cpl. William "Kyle" Carpenter will become the tenth recipient of the award for valor exhibited in Afghanistan or Iraq when Obama presents the medal during a White House ceremony on June 19.

Carpenter, 24, was wounded Nov. 21, 2010, while guarding a patrol base in a small village in Helmand Province.

According to a Marine Corps summary of the action, Carpenter and Lance Cpl. Nicholas Eufrazio were on a roof providing security for the patrol base.

Three grenades were lobbed into the compound across the street from where Carpenter and Eufrazio were hidden behind a sandbag barrier. The first grenade injured an Afghan National Army soldier, and the second did not detonate.

The third landed close to Carpenter and Eufrazio. Without a thought to himself, Carpenter placed himself between the grenade and Eufrazio to shield him, and took the brunt of the explosion.

The hero was severely wounded with a depressed skull, a collapsed right lung, multiple facial fractures, the loss of a third of his lower jaw and fragment injuries to his arms and legs.

Thanks to the heroic efforts by Carpenter, Eufrazio only received a head injury from shrapnel.

A native of Flowood, Mississippi, Carpenter was immediately evacuated and underwent emergency brain surgery. He also lost his right eye.

Carpenter was a long-term patient at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, Maryland, until he medically retired last July, and is currently a student at the University of South Carolina.

Image via YouTube

Pam Wright