MA2 Mark Mayo
You have heard the story. On the night of March 24, 2014 a man boarded USS MAHAN (DDG 72), wrestled with and eventually disarmed the Petty Officer of the Watch, and – if not for the immediate action of Petty Officer Mayo – could have killed several Sailors on board.
But he wasn’t expecting the fast and decisive reaction by Mark Mayo, who ran aboard, got between the assailant and the Petty Officer (shielding her with his own body), and was fatally shot during the exchange of gun fire. His actions delayed the shooter long enough, however, for other security personnel to arrive and kill the man.
By all accounts he was a beloved member of the base security team, and had an easy going, likeable personality. It is obvious that his death was a devastating blow to his family and shipmates (read the story on the memorial service at the Norfolk Naval Station here).
He died too young, as have many men and women who serve our country, but he died the death of a warrior, saving lives by sacrificing his own. Many people have called him a hero.
And so do I. In every sense. Rest in peace, Petty Officer Mayo. Other Sailors are alive because of you.