SGT Craig Warfle of the 1st Ranger Battalion became the second most decorated soldier (SFC Leroy Petry and his Medal of Honor holds the mantle) in the 75th Ranger Regiment as he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross during a ceremony last Friday, October the 26th. This also marks the first time since 9/11 that a serving Ranger was awarded this honor. Hell, to be honest, I’m not even sure if a Ranger of the modern Battalions has been awarded this since our beginning in 1974.

The DSC is second only to the Medal of Honor and last Friday’s ceremony marks the 26th time it has been awarded since the Global War on Terrorism started in 2001 – 11 awards for Afghanistan and 15 for Iraq. An interesting statistic is that out of those 26 awards; 10 were awarded to Special Operations soldiers (six to members of the Special Forces, one to a Night Stalker, two to members of Delta Force, and now one to a Ranger). The Distinguished Service Cross is the equivalent to the Navy Cross and Air Force Cross.

Part of the citation below, the full citation can be found here: http://www.stripes.com/blogs/stripes-central/army-spc-craig-warfle-s-citation-bumped-up-to-distinguished-service-cross-1.194855

“Immediately after the kinetic strike, the team inserted a Ranger Element onto the hot landing zone to the West of the target area to eliminate the several remaining enemy combatants.  Ranger Element 1, consisting of Specialist Warfle and five others, were tasked with isolating the Northern side of the tree line and suppressing the enemy to allow Ranger Element 2 to assault from West to East.  Upon infiltration the Ranger Assault Force received effective enemy fire in vicinity of the North-South running tree line where the AH-64s had just completed gun runs.  As soon as Specialist Warfle stepped off the ramp he came under fire from multiple enemy positions and without hesitation returned fire and crawled 15 meters through the muddy field towards the enemy.  From this position, Specialist Warfle suppressed the multiple enemy positions with 150 rounds from his MK-46 allowing Ranger Element 1 to move to the North and Ranger Element 2 to maneuver to the South.  Under fire and with no cover in the open field, Specialist Warfle continued to suppress the enemy positions permitting members of the Assault Force to get down in the prone position while the leaders determined a way to assault the enemy positions. After a couple of minutes passed, Ranger Element 2 came under heavy effective fire from enemy crew served weapons.  Realizing that Ranger Element 2 was effectively pinned down in the open field to the South, Specialist Warfle moved with Sergeant Lugo to the North to flank the enemy position from the North-West.