On this date, July 12, 2011, SFC Leroy Petry was awarded the Medal of Honor by President Obama in a White House ceremony attended by his family and those of his fellow soldiers. Petry was assigned to the 2nd Bn. 75th Ranger Regiment based in Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington.
Petry’s actions took place on his eighth deployment, two in Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom and six in Afghanistan supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. He had served in a number of positions in the Rangers, including as a grenadier, squad automatic rifleman, fire team leader, squad leader, operations sergeant, and a weapons squad leader.
Medal of Honor action During a Rare Daylight Raid:
On May 26, 2008, SSG Petry and his unit D Company, 2nd Bn., were on a mission in Paktia Province in Afghanistan. The mission was a rare daylight raid to capture a high-value target from the Taliban. Petry and the platoon headquarters was to occupy the target building once it was secured.
The 70 Rangers immediately came into contact with about 40 Taliban after getting out of the helicopters on the target. The Taliban insurgents quickly took the Rangers under heavy fire. Petry took charge of an assaulting squad as they were clearing a building, and after it was secure, he and PFC Lucas Robinson went to clear an outer courtyard.