President Donald Trump will be presenting the Medal of Honor to former Army Staff Sgt. David G. Bellavia.
Bellavia is being awarded for his actions in Fallujah, and this award makes him the first living Iraq War veteran to receive the honor.
It was in 2004 during Operation Phantom Fury that Bellavia’s platoon got stuck while they were clearing houses. Bellavia changed his M16 rifle for an M249 Squad Automatic Weapon and he entered the house where his squad was trapped and provided cover fire so the soldiers could reach safety.
This occured after a Bradley Fighting Vehicle was unable to directly fire into the house, it was, “then-Staff Sergeant Bellavia re-entered the house… and assaulted insurgents who were firing rocket-propelled grenades.” He was able to chase five different fighters through the house till the threat was gone.
The White House stated, “That remarkable day, then-Staff Sergent Bellavia rescued an entire squad, cleared an insurgent strongpoint, and saved many members of his platoon from imminent threat.”
After serving six years, Bellavia was released from the Army in 2005 and has already been awarded the Silver and Bronze Star, as well as the New York State Conspicuous Service Cross. He now hosts a radio talk show on WBEN in Buffalo, N.Y.