Capt Brian Chontosh, USMC


If you haven’t visited the Vets for Freedom site yet, you should. In it are some great inspirational stories of our modern day heroes in action. Here’s one that you’ll love.

As described in the Vets for Freedom website, “…Chontosh’s first battlefield heroics occurred in his first deployment to Iraq during the invasion and liberation of the country. On March 25, 2003, then First Lieutenant Chontosh, recognized his unit was caught in a “kill zone” on Highway One leading to Ad Diwaniyah in the initial campaign to Baghdad during Operation Iraqi Freedom. After punching his vehicle through a breech, he was immediately taken under withering machine gun fire from a crew served weapon in a trench. Chontosh plowed toward the machine gunner, trusting his .50 caliber gunner to silence the enemy, which was done almost immediately.

Chontosh then dismounted his vehicle and armed with only his M16A2 and a M9 pistol began to systematically clear the trench that his vehicle was now inside. With a complete disregard for his own personal safety, Chontosh twice picked up discarded enemy rifles and continued his ferocious attack.

When one of his Marines following behind found an RPG, Chontosh decided to personally use it to destroy another unlucky clump of enemy soldiers thinking they could overpower the brazen Marine. Essentially any Saddam loyalist in the way of Brian Chontosh that day was extremely unlucky.

When his dedicated and bold personal attack had ended, he had cleared over 200 meters of the enemy trench and lying behind him and at his feet were the remains of over 20 enemy fighters. For these actions, Brian Chontosh was awarded the second highest award given for combat valor, The Navy Cross.” (Click here for the complete article.)

Capt Chontosh is the prototype Marine – decisive, a leader by example, courageous under fire. He’s our hero of the week.


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