30 April 2008

Two Schweinfurt soldiers receive Silver Star

Spc. Jarrod Taylor, right, an infantryman with the 172nd Separate Infantry Brigade in Schweinfurt, Germany, shakes hands with 172nd commander, Col. Jeffrey Sinclair, after being decorated with the Silver Star at his battalion headquarters Tuesday. At center is Staff Sgt. Octavio Nuñez, who, like Taylor, was decorated Tuesday for heroic actions in Baghdad last May. Photo and story Mark St.Clair / S&S.

SCHWEINFURT, Germany — Two infantrymen were awarded the nation’s third-highest medal for wartime valor on Tuesday in a short ceremony on Ledward Barracks.

Staff Sgt. Octavio Nuñez, 28, and Spc. Jarrod Taylor, 22, were decorated with the Silver Star by Col. Jeffrey Sinclair, commander of the 172nd Separate Infantry Brigade, for heroic actions in Iraq on May 14, 2007.

Telling of how the two heroes chose their friends over themselves, Sinclair said people who have never served may not understand how someone will repeatedly put themselves in harm’s way to save a fellow soldier.
“You’ll never be prepared for something like that,” Nuñez said when asked whether or not his training kicked in during the attack. “I never thought I was going to see my buddies running around on fire.”

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