You are twenty-two years old, wounded, and the only Soldier preventing your Observation Post from being overrun in an attack by 200 enemy fighters on the outskirts of Wanat, in the Waygal District of Afghanistan. You ask for reinforcements and are told no one can get to you. What would you do?
For (then) Sergeant Ryan Pitts, you would fight for all you are worth. By the time he was joined by other Soldiers and eventually evacuated, nine of his brothers had been killed and 27 wounded; but the OP was still in coalition hands. He had held the ground. SSG Pitts will be the third Soldier to receive the Medal of Honor for valor in what is now known as the Battle of Wanat.
Michelle Tan of Army Times wrote a detailed and fascinating account of the battle (complete with pictures and a video of SSG Pitts) in her article, Army Staff Sergeant will receive Medal of Honor for valor at Wanat.
When you are done, you cannot help but ask yourself, “What would I do?”
Staff Sergeant Pitts will receive the Medal of Honor on July 21, 2014, according to a White House press release.
(Thanks to Navy veteran Michael for the notification)