Friday, September 21, 2007
Arkansas Guardsman Awarded Silver Star
FORT CHAFFEE MANEUVER TRAINING CENTER, Ark. - Capt. John F. Vanlandingham's mission for Operation Iraqi Freedom was to train Iraqi National Guard troops to defend their country.
When insurgents attacked the convoy he and his comrades were traveling in, Capt. Vanlandingham ignored his own personal safety to save the lives of several ING troops by venturing numerous times into the kill zone to help them escape.
For his "never leave a troop on the battlefield" attitude, the captain received the Silver Star during an Aug. 12 ceremony here.
"The Iraqis, to me, were like American Soldiers," he said. "We put the effort and countless hours into training them. We had the duty to help them as much as we would have a fellow American."