President Barack Obama will award the nation’s highest military honor to a Kentucky native this week.
Former Marine Corporal Dakota Meyer is the third living recipient of the Medal of Honor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan. Two years ago in Afghanistan, he ran into enemy fire to find four of his fellow troops. He then helped retrieve their bodies. Meyer didn’t expect any commendation for his actions. He thought he had failed because his fellow Marines died. He’ll receive the medal Thursday.
An interview with Meyer:
“I have a platform to where I can go out and let Americans know what guys like me are doing. I think the problem in the military is the infantry guys and all the guys out there doing the fighting never get recognition,” he says.
Meyer is back in Kentucky, and he looks forward to his life calming down after this week.
“You try to go and give everyone an interview because how do you decide who to turn down? So then you start running yourself into the ground. You’re talking…everyone wants a piece of you for the worst day of your life,” he says. “It’s just like reliving it over and over.”
Meyer has started a scholarship program and he plans to pursue a business degree, but he says if he could return to combat, he would sign up with the Marines immediately.
He will be the third living recipient—and first living Marine—of the award for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan.