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Spc. Christopher Halski, 2nd Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, stands tall as Lt. Col. Gregory Baine, of he same unit, presents him with an Army Commendation Medal during an award ceremony, Dec. 10, 2008.

FORWARD OPERATING BASE LOYALTY, Iraq - One standout infantryman earned six individual recognitions as 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Multi-National Division - Baghdad, infantry leaders honored Soldiers for their heroism and bravery, Dec. 10.

Spc. Christopher Halski, an Omaha, Neb., native, assigned to Company C, 2nd Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, stood out among his peers as his company awarded him, and the comrades with whom he shed blood and sweat the past year, multiple commendations. Halski earned two Purple Heart Medals, two Army Commendation Medals, a Combat Infantryman Badge and an Iraqi Campaign Medal.

Halski remained quite humble after the ceremony, stating he only did what leaders asked of him - simply performed his duty as an infantryman.

"It's a point of pride," commented Halski, after being presented the awards, who said he was honored about being recognized and felt his comrades were remarkable for their contributions and sacrifices.

Although Halski is modest about his accomplishments, others were more vocal in their praise of his achievements. A close friend and battle buddy said Halski is one of the best Soldiers he knows.

"He's an outstanding Soldier and just an outstanding human being in general," declared Sgt. Lucas Jordan, a Thifton, Ga., native. "He's really a credit to the Army and our unit as a whole."

Jordan said if anyone deserves the awards, it is Halski.

Sgt. 1st Class Gordon Smith, Halski's platoon sergeant, expressed his pride in his Soldier's accomplishments.

"One thing about Spc. Halski is that even though he was wounded on two separate occasions, with his wounds, he was still able to fight the fight," said Smith, a Plano, Texas, native.

He said that although injured, Halski continued to fight until his comrades had to pull him out of "the fight" so a medic could administer medical treatment to him.

During his tour of duty, Halski earned two Purple Heart Medals for wounds he suffered in combat.

Halski earned his first Army commendation Medal when he came to the aid of his fellow Soldiers, who found themselves immobilized because of enemy gunfire.

"Through his [Halski's] leadership and his courage, he was able to pin the enemy down with the .50-cal [caliber machine gun]," explained Smith. Halski earned his second Army Commendation Medal for his general performance throughout his deployment, said Smith. He earned the Combat Infantryman's Badge for his actions in active ground combat while assigned to an infantry unit, and the Iraqi Campaign Medal for his service in the country of Iraq.

"Whenever anyone needed help with anything, Halski was the catch phrase 'go to guy,'" said Smith. "I think it's an honor for us to be able to honor a Soldier of his caliber."

Although being presented the awards, particularly the Army Commendation Medals, may be one of the high points of Halski's deployment, he said the occasion marked a good time for reflection about everything the Co. C infantry Soldiers have accomplished during this deployment, which is his second in the past five years. His first deployment with Co. C, 2nd Bn., 30th Inf., took him to Afghanistan.

One of the keys for getting through the deployment, he said, is the bond he developed with battle buddies.

"Now we can look back and say, 'Wow, we did all that,'" he said, as he and his team prepare for returning homes after the deployment. "In the 13 months deployed, we have made a world of difference in the Beladiyat area."

Page last updated Mon December 15th, 2008 at 07:08