An army sergeant who lost his hand in Afghanistan as he was throwing a live grenade away from his fellow troops will receive the Medal of Honor.
President Barack Obama will award Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Arthur Petry, who was also injured with shrapnel during the incident in the Afghanistan town of Pakita in 2008, with the medal next month, according to the Army News Service on Wednesday.
“It’s very humbling to know that the guys thought that much of me and my actions that day, to nominate me for that,” Petry said after learning he was to be nominated for the award.
Petry will be the second living recipient of the Medal of Honor from the Afghan and Iraq wars, according to the Army statement.
In the fateful incident, Petry picked up an armed enemy grenade that landed next to him and two Army Rangers, throwing it back toward the assailants, according to the Army News Service. The grenade exploded and amputated his right hand. He applied a tourniquet on his arm and called for help.“If not for Staff Sergeant Petry’s actions, we would have been seriously wounded or killed,” said Sgt. Daniel Higgins, one of the men Petry was trying to protect, in a statement.