Medal of Honor
Staff Sgt. Ty Michael Carter receives the Medal of Honor from President Barack Obama in the East Room of the White House, Aug. 26, 2013. Carter distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a Scout with Bravo Troop, 3d Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, during combat operations against an armed enemy in Kamdesh District, Nuristan Province, Afghanistan on October 3, 2009. On that morning, Specialist Carter and his comrades awakened to an attack of an estimated 300 enemy fighters occupying the high ground on all four sides of Combat Outpost Keating, employing concentrated fire from recoilless rifles, rocket propelled grenades, anti-aircraft machine guns, mortars and small arms fire. Specialist Carter reinforced a forward battle position, ran twice through a 100 meter gauntlet of enemy fire to resupply ammunition and voluntarily remained there to defend the isolated position. Armed with only an M4 carbine rifle, Specialist Carter placed accurate, deadly fire on the enemy, beating back the assault force and preventing the position from being overrun, over the course of several hours. With complete disregard for his own safety and in spite of his own wounds, he ran through a hail of enemy rocket propelled grenade and machine gun fire to rescue a critically wounded comrade who had been pinned down in an exposed position. Specialist Carter rendered life extending first aid and carried the Soldier to cover. On his own initiative, Specialist Carter again maneuvered through enemy fire to check on a fallen Soldier and recovered the squad's radio, which allowed them to coordinate their evacuation with fellow Soldiers. With teammates providing covering fire, Specialist Carter assisted in moving the wounded Soldier 100 meters through withering enemy fire to the aid station and before returning to the fight. Specialist Carter's heroic actions and tactical skill were critical to the defense of Combat Outpost Keating, preventing the enemy from capturing the position and saving the lives of his fellow Soldiers. Specialist Ty M. Carter's extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, Bravo Troop, 3d Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division and the United States Army. Carter is currently stationed as a staff noncommissioned officer with the 7th Infantry Division at Joint Base Lewis-McChord and lives with his wife, Shannon, and their three children.

WASHINGTON (Aug. 28, 2013) -- Staff Sgt. Ty Michael Carter became the second Soldier to receive the nation's highest military award for extraordinary gallantry and selfless actions during the Battle of Kamdesh at Combat Outpost Keating, Afghanistan, on Oct. 3, 2009.

After telling the story of the ambush, which raged for 13 hours between 53 Soldiers and some 300 Taliban, and citing Carter's complete disregard for his own safety, President Barack Obama draped the Medal of Honor Aug. 26 around the 33-year-old Cavalry scout's neck in the White House East Room.

Near the Pakistan border, the Keating battle was the first since the Vietnam War in which two living service members received the Medal of Honor for their individual actions in the same battle. Staff Sgt. Clinton Romesha was presented the Medal of Honor on Feb. 11.

Carter braved merciless enemy fire from rocket-propelled grenades, anti-aircraft machine guns, mortars and small-arms by running the 100-meter length of the outpost twice to retrieve ammunition for his fellow Soldiers. At the same time he provided suppressive fire to keep the enemy from over-running the post. Then, with complete disregard for his own safety, and in spite of wounds, he discarded his M-4 and ran to a critically wounded Soldier, rendered life-extending first aid. He carried the Soldier to medics as Romesha and his team provided cover.

The battle would end the lives of eight Soldiers. An additional 25 others suffered wounds.

Before the citation was read, Obama recalled Carter's words to him earlier in the day, then asked the Soldiers from his unit -- the 61st Cavalry Regt. -- to stand and be recognized along with the families of the eight fallen Soldiers.

"Ty says, 'This award is not mine alone,'" the president said. "The battle that day, he will say, was 'one team in one fight,' and everyone 'did what we could do to keep each other alive.' And some of these men are with us again. And I have to repeat this because they're among the most highly decorated units of this entire war: 37 Army Commendation Medals, 27 Purple Hearts, 18 Bronze Stars for their valor, nine Silver Stars for their gallantry."

Obama took a few minutes to address not only Carter's courage on the battlefield, but the courage to seek help for what he finally accepted and recognized in himself as post-traumatic stress.

"As Ty knows, part of the healing is facing the sources of the pain," Obama said. "So now he wants to help other troops in their own recovery. And, it is absolutely critical for us to work with brave young men like Ty to put an end to any stigma that keeps more folks from seeking help.

"So let me say it as clearly as I can to any of our troops or veterans who are watching and struggling: Look at this man. Look at this Soldier. Look at this warrior. He's as tough as they come. And, if he can find the courage and the strength, to not only seek help, but also to speak out about it, to take care of himself and to stay strong, then so can you. So can you."

Page last updated Wed August 28th, 2013 at 00:00