File Under Badass... Last week, a former Navy hospital corpsman was awarded a Silver Star -- the military's third-highest award for valor -- for saving the life of a wounded Marine during an enemy ambush in Afghanistan.
Silver Star for Doc who fought to save Marine
Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Kong was serving in the Sangin District of Afghanistan with the 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment in 2011 when he and fellow service members came under attack by Taliban fighters. During the firefight, Marine Cpl. Michael Dawers was shot in the chest and fell to the ground.
According to the Silver Star citation, Kong was initially pinned down by enemy fire but "courageously rushed from his covered position, boldly charged into the kill zone dodging a hail of bullets, and reached the casualty," pulling him to safety and administering "life-saving aid."
"You're fine, you're fine," Kong said when he reached the wounded Marine. Dawers was writhing in pain. The bullet had nicked the top off his chest plate and shattered his sternum.
Kong tried to drag the Marine and his heavy rucksack out of the mud. When that didn't work he hunkered down and kept shooting until Dawers got his pack unfastened. Then Kong stood and pulled the wounded Marine 50 feet to cover.
"Doc, you just saved my life," Dawers said when Kong rolled him on his back to treat his wounds.
Kong, who finished his six-year Navy enlistment in 2013, received the Silver Star from Maj. Gen. Lawrence Nicholson during a ceremony Friday afternoon at Camp Pendleton. He is currently attending De Anza Community College with plans to become an emergency room surgeon.
More here: Sailor Who Saved Marine Under Fire Awarded Silver Star