From businessmen to athletes, there are numerous individuals who embody many of the traits that we as Americans hold dear. But we all know the men and women of our armed forces set the standard. One such man, Medal of Honor recipient Corporal Kyle Carpenter, deserves your recognition and respect on this Veterans Day.
Kyle Carpenter served in the Marine Corps as a Squad Automatic Weapon (SAW) gunner. While deployed to the Helmand Province of Afghanistan, Carpenter threw himself on a grenade to save a friend and fellow Marine. Knowing that he would likely lose his life, Carpenter willingly put his body in the way of the blast.
Miraculously, Carpenter wasn’t killed. He sustained severe injuries, but lived to fight another day. After leaving the Marine Corps, he enrolled at the University of South Carolina and was initiated as a Kappa Sigma. Shortly thereafter, in June, 2014, Carpenter was awarded the Medal of Honor at a ceremony at the White House by President Obama.
Though Kyle Carpenter has left the Marine Corps, his service to this country and to veterans has not ceased. He has raised money for the Fisher House Foundation, an incredible organization that provides housing to the families of wounded warriors while undergoing treatment in military hospitals, he parachuted into the Marine Corps Marathon in October, and he has served as an inspiration to countless Americans through his actions both in and out of uniform.
At the University of South Carolina, Kyle Carpenter has been nothing short of a gentleman. Everyone I’ve heard from says he is exceptionally polite and courteous at all times. I’ve seen tweets from students on campus talking about how he’s inspired them in everything from athletics to academics.
Can you think of any greater demonstration of brotherhood than the willingness to lay down your life for a friend? On this Veterans Day, remember the many men and women, like Kyle, who have foregone safety and comfort to protect the freedoms we as Americans hold dear, and give them your respect..