82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper to receive U.S. Army’s highest peacetime award for saving lives during 2021 active shooter incident

 WHAT: The 82nd Airborne Division will recognize U.S. Army Paratrooper, 1st Lt. Joseph Guerra, assigned to 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division in a Soldier’s Medal presentation ceremony.

WHEN: August 11, 2023, from 2 to 3 p.m.

WHERE: The Hall of Heroes, Fort Liberty, North Carolina 29310

BACKGROUND: 1st Lt. Guerra is being recognized for his heroic actions on June 11, 2021 during an active shooter incident in Columbus, GA. With complete disregard for his own safety, then-2nd Lt. Guerra, pushed a fellow Soldier to the ground and covered her with his own body to protect her from incoming gunfire. Once the assailant fled the scene, 2nd Lt. Guerra and his fellow Soldier quickly rendered first aid to three victims suffering wounds from the attack. He continued to remain with the victims while monitoring their condition until paramedics arrived at the scene, and they were transported to a local hospital. Ultimately, his actions directly saved the lives of four people and are in keeping with the values and traditions of the U.S. Army.

The Soldier’s Medal is the highest level of award that a Soldier can be awarded during peacetime, for heroism involving voluntary risk of life not involving conflict with an armed enemy combatant.

Media is invited to this event. For media inquiries or to RSVP, please contact the 82nd Airborne Division Public Affairs Office at (910) 432-0487, or 82divpao@army.mil, no later than 5 p.m. on August 9.