By Army Pfc. Christina Sinders
Special to American Forces Press Service
July 14, 2008 - A soldier from 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team was awarded a Silver Star Medal in a ceremony here July 12. Army Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Schloesser, Combined Joint Task Force 101 commander, presented Army Capt. William G. Cromie with the decoration and praised him for his valor.
Cromie's platoon was called out to perform route clearance on a portion of the Korengal Road on Nov. 16, 2007, after receiving a tip that an improvised explosive device may have been placed there.
"While travelling down the road, our first vehicle struck an IED," Cromie said. "Immediately, we were ambushed on three sides by heavily armed militants."
Two of Cromie's soldiers managed to maneuver into a better position that allowed them to cover the platoon, but they were soon pinned down and running dangerously low on ammunition. Grabbing more ammunition, Cromie took off through the small-arms crossfire to resupply his two soldiers.
The platoon called for close-air support and mounted a counterattack that pushed the militants back to a fortified compound. The platoon then cleared the compound and killed the militants.
"I really would like to thank the squad leaders -- they really acted professionally even under a stressful situation like that -- and the guys in 3rd Platoon for their bravery," Cromie said.
(Army Pfc. Christina Sinders serves in the Combined Joint Task Force 101 Public Affairs Office.)