Friday, April 30, 2004

# Posted 4:30 AM by Patrick Belton  

BRITISH CPA STAFFER RECEIVES AMERICAN AWARD FOR VALOR: This via email from the CPA press office, about a UK civilian who though injured saved the life of an army colonel and three others while under enemy fire:
Dr Andrew Rathmell, Director of Planning, Policy and Analysis at the Coalition Provisional Authority, today received the Office of the Secretary of Defense Medal for Valor. The medal was presented by Ambassador L. Paul Bremer at a ceremony at the CPA Headquarters in Baghdad.

On January 21st 2004, Dr Rathmell was visiting the Forward Operating Base Warhorse in Baquba with civilian and military colleagues. While in Baquba, Dr Rathmell was caught in a mortar and rocket attack on the base. One mortar landed close to Dr Rathmell, and he was knocked to the ground, temporarily deafened by the blast. Despite his injury, Dr Rathmell was able to drag US Army Colonel Ralph Sabatino to safety, before running into the line of fire three more times to administer potentially life-saving first aid to others who were wounded, and tragically confirm that two soldiers were already dead.

As Ambassador Bremer presented the award to Dr Rathmell, he said "valor at risk of your own life requires strength of purpose sufficient to overcome the love of life, the fear of death. Andrew Rathmell is not a professional warrior, but he displayed the courage and coolness under fire to which all warriors aspire".
This might serve as a fairly moving reminder that even in our day, heroism is not dead.
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