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A Moment of Silence, Please. This man may be awarded the Medal of Honor for this........If not, there is no justice in this world.


Marine sacrifices his life for others in grenade blast

By Gordon Trowbridge
The Army Times

FALLUJAH, Iraq ? Sgt. Rafael Peralta built a reputation as a man who always put his Marines' interests ahead of his own.

He showed that again, when he made the ultimate sacrifice of his life Tuesday, by shielding his fellow Marines from a grenade blast.

"It's stuff you hear about in boot camp, about World War II and Tarawa Marines who won the Medal of Honor," said Lance Cpl. Rob Rogers, 22, of Tallahassee, Fla., one of Peralta's platoon mates in 1st Platoon, Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment.

Peralta, 25, as platoon scout, wasn't even assigned to the assault team that entered the insurgent safe house in northern Fallujah, Marines said. Despite an assignment that would have allowed him to avoid such dangerous duty, he regularly asked squad leaders if he could join their assault teams, they said.

One of the first Marines to enter the house, Peralta was wounded in the face by rifle fire from a room near the entry door, said Lance Cpl. Adam Morrison, 20, of Tacoma, who was in the house when Peralta was first wounded.

Moments later, an insurgent rolled a fragmentation grenade into the area where a wounded Peralta and the other Marines were seeking cover.

As Morrison and another Marine scrambled to escape the blast, pounding against a locked door, Peralta grabbed the grenade and cradled it into his body, Morrison said. While one Marine was badly wounded by shrapnel from the blast, the Marines said they believe more lives would have been lost if not for Peralta's selfless act.

"He saved half my fire team," said Cpl. Brannon Dyer, 27, of Blairsville, Ga.

The Marines said such a sacrifice would be perfectly in character for Peralta, a Mexico native who lived in San Diego and gained U.S. citizenship after joining the Marines.




"He'd stand up for his Marines to an insane point," Rogers said.

Rogers and others remembered Peralta as a squared-away Marine, so meticulous about uniform standards that he sent his camouflage uniform to be pressed while training in Kuwait before entering Iraq.

But mostly they remembered acts of selflessness: offering career advice, giving a buddy a ride home from the bar, teaching salsa dance steps in the barracks.

While Alpha Company was still gathering information, and a formal finding on Peralta's death is likely months away, not a single Marine in Alpha Company doubted the account of Peralta's act of sacrifice.

"I believe it," said Alpha's commander, Capt. Lee Johnson. "He was that kind of Marine."

Semper Fi, Sgt Peralta. Semper Fi.
 

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anyone seen my coffee cup
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Damn fine men, both of them......................
 

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Cephus said:
That is what I was talking about when I told of combat and not wanting to let your family down as far as doing your duty . I'm with you on this one if he doesn't get the
CMH then no one should. I had a cousin who won it in Viet-Nam here is his sstory if your interested.He has a merchant marine ship named for him.

http://www.msc.navy.mil/inventory/citations/seay.htm
Cephus, thanks for the link; it shows that despite what the media tried to tell the public, there were Hero?s in Viet Nam, just as there are in Iraq.
 

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Paths only a few can follow. So many owe so much to so few.
 

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This is a letter written to a local paper here, from the mother of one of the Marines Sgt Peralta saved.


Grateful mother says 'Semper Fidelis'





You thank someone when they give you a gift. You thank people for compliments, favors, extra efforts made on your behalf. You thank people all of your life from the time you learn that it's impolite not to.

Just what can you say that is remotely close to adequate to thank someone who is no longer here to thank and who has given you the greatest gift of sacrifice that can be given? On Nov. 15, Marine Sgt. Rafael Peralta with Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine in Fallujah gave me my son's life. My son is a Marine PFC who was in the room when Sgt. Peralta, already shot by an insurgent, cradled a live grenade thrown by the enemy beneath his body to shield the other Marines who were with him. My son was one of those Marines. This champion of men made the split-second decision to sacrifice his life for his men - my son. The words don't exist to describe what's in my heart for this man. He will be with me the rest of my life. Not a day will go by without the name Peralta crossing through my mind. This immigrant son from Mexico became one of the finest Americans of his generation, indeed any generation.

Sgt. Rafael Peralta, the only thing this grateful mother can say to you is Semper Fidelis, Sgt. Peralta, Semper Fidelis.

Julie Snyder

Snohomish
 

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God bless him and his family. He gave it his all for god and country.
 
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