Marines to receive Navy Cross for Afghanistan valor
Two Marines will receive the Navy Cross Friday for their distinguished service during intense battles with Taliban fighters in Afghanistan two years ago.
As a vehicle commander on patrol in Afghanistan’s Helmand province, Sgt. Clifford Wooldridge led his Marines during a surprise attack there in 2010.
After a fire fight that expended his ammunition and killed several Taliban fighters, Wooldridge was forced into hand-to-hand combat with another armed foe. The sergeant eventually killed the man using the fighter’s own weapon, according to a release from the Marine Corps.
Sgt. Christopher Farias will also receive the medal for courageous actions stemming from another 2010 battle in Afghanistan, according to several media reports.
Farias was wounded and knocked out during a Taliban attack, but regained consciousness and continued to fight.
He is credited for saving the lives of other Marines, reported The Houston Chronicle.
Farias told the newspaper’s website that he had to keep his promise, “which was to bring my guys home.”
Wooldridge is from Port Angeles, Wash., while Farias is from La Porte, Texas.
The Navy Cross is the second highest honor in the military; only the Medal of Honor ranks higher.