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Ross A. McGinnis

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U.S. Army 
Medal Of Honor, Iraq

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On December 4, 2006. PFC McGinnis' platoon was conducting a combat patrol in Adhamiyah, Iraq, and his Platoon's combat patrol moved deliberately along a major route north towards the Abu Hanifa mosque, passing an IED hole from a recent detonation on a Military Police patrol that very morning. The combat patrol made a left turn onto a side street southwest of the Abu Hanifa Mosque. There were two-story buildings and parked vehicles on either side of the road. PFC McGinnis was manning the M2 .50 Caliber Machine Gun on the Platoon Sergeant's M1151 and his primary responsibility was to protect the rear of the combat patrol from enemy attacks. Moments after his vehicle made the turn traveling southwest a fragmentation grenade was thrown at his vehicle by an unidentified insurgent from an adjacent rooftop. PFC McGinnis immediately yelled "grenade" on the vehicle's intercom system to alert the four other members of his crew and then made an attempt to personally deflect the grenade, but was unable to prevent it from falling through the gunner's hatch. Unhesitatingly and with complete disregard for his own life he announced "the grenade is in the truck" and threw his back over the grenade to pin it between his body and the truck's radio mount. When the grenade detonated, PFC McGinnis absorbed all lethal fragments and the concussion with his own body killing him instantly. His early warning allowed all four members of his crew to position their bodies in a protective posture to prepare for the grenade's blast. As a result of his quick reflexes and heroic measures, no other members of the vehicle crew were seriously wounded in the attack.

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