Kentucky native Dakota Meyer received the Medal of Honor from President Obama Thursday, becoming the first living Marine to receive the award in four decades.
Speaking from the East Room of the White House, Mr. Obama thanked Meyer and other members of his unit for their service in Afghanistan.
“You did your duty above and beyond, and you kept the faith with the highest traditions of the Marine Corps you love,” Obama said.
Earlier, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., praised the 23-year-old Marine corporal for his bravery in Afghanistan and other lawmakers from the commonwealth have since joined the chorus of cheers.
From U.S. Senator Rand Paul, R-Ky.:
“Marine Sgt. Dakota Meyer has received numerous decorations and awards for his service and devotion to his country. This son of Kentucky has now received the highest honor, and the gratitude and pride of an entire nation for his service.”
From U.S. Ben Chanlder, D-Ky.:
“Sergeant Dakota Meyer represents the very best our country has to offer, and I think I can speak on behalf of all Kentuckians when I say that he makes our state proud.
Sergeant Meyer exhibited extraordinary courage and heroism by heading into enemy fire to rescue soldiers that had been ambushed and trapped by enemy combatants in the Kunar province of Afghanistan.
Although he lost four friends that day, his actions embody the spirit of the United States Marine Corps and the fidelity Marines show toward their fellow soldiers. I want to congratulate Sergeant Meyer on receiving the Medal of Honor and thank him for his remarkable service to our country.”