• Today's Daily Devotion
Primer 5: Medals
Captain Mark Braswell went into Iraq in 2004 with two main prayers: that all 127 men and women under his leadership would come home alive. He also prayed that he would come ...

Primer 5: Medals

Capt. Mark Braswell, United States Army

Captain Mark Braswell went into Iraq in 2004 with two main prayers: that all 127 men and women under his leadership would come home alive. He also prayed that he would come home to be a husband to his wife and a dad to his two newly adopted daughters.

After spending a year providing shower, laundry, and clothing renovation services at Forward Operating Bases in some of the most remote and dangerous places in Iraq and performing gun truck missions supplying and supporting military bases, the soldiers in the 340th lived up to their mottos: Proud and Ready! and Twice the citizen Twice the soldier!

Several of the 127 soldiers serving in the 340th Quartermaster Company were wounded and two had serious head or neck injuries from IEDs. “These two were very close calls. One soldier received an emergency field tracheotomy from a Navy Corpsman that saved his life,” Braswell explained. “Some returned by medevac and all the rest returned in October 2005. All came home alive.”

Braswell was proud of the medals his company earned. Ten of the wounded soldiers earned Purple Heart Medals and seven received Bronze Star Medals. One of the 340th soldiers rescued some Marines who were injured by double stacked landmines in an IED kill-zone for which he was awarded an Army Commendation Medal with “V” device for Valor and thanked by the Commandant of the United States Marine Corps.

Some soldiers earned the new coveted Combat Action Badge for their experience in combat. “Every soldier earned a distinguishing shoulder sleeve insignia for their wartime service, or as soldiers simply call it a ‘combat patch’ that they proudly wear on their right shoulder,” Braswell proudly reported.

No mission was too tough. The soldiers got the job done. Every time, they adapted and overcame the challenges. For their service in Iraq, all of the soldiers in the 340th also received the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with the “M” Mobilization device, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and the Overseas Training ribbon.

Although medals and recognition are important, the greater satisfaction for Braswell was knowing that every soldier came home alive; and that he had the opportunity to continue being a father to his daughters and a husband to his wife.

Prayer:

Thank you for the medals and rewards that recognize achievement. Thank you also for the greater blessing of family and friendships.


Other Items In The Battlefields and Blessings Series

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