Photo above by Staff Sgt. Mark Morrow.
By Cpl. Fatmeh Saad
Staff Sgt. Nathan A. Hervey, an instructor with the Advanced Infantry Training Battalion at the School of Infantry-East, was awarded a Bronze Star Medal at Stone Bay rifle range, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, on Feb. 5th.
He received the award for his actions while carrying out duties as a scout sniper section leader with 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The medal was accompanied by the combat distinguishing device for acts of valor, known as the Combat “V”, and he was cited for extraordinary heroism.
Hervey, then a sergeant, was deployed to Afghanistan and tasked with surveillance of northern Musa Qala, a district in Helmand Province. On May 21, 2011, his squad entered a firefight with insurgents attempting to transport weapons for use against Patrol Base Griffin.
The citation states, “Seeing the adjacent Marines’ situation deteriorating, Sergeant Hervey began moving his snipers north, personally sweeping for explosive devices, and attempting to establish an attack by fire position as Marine reinforcements arrived.”
“The things written in the citation reflects one moment out of our seven months,” said Hervey. “During that deployment, when Marines needed help, they unhesitatingly went forward just like any of us here wearing this uniform would have done, regardless of life, or limb, or risk.”
Hervey demonstrated selfless dedication to his Marines and the mission as he engaged the enemy, secured the insurgent withdrawal, and ensured the destruction of the enemy’s heavy weapons. He led his Marines and coordinated with his company headquarters to provide aerial support.
“This is the quality kind of leadership we want, setting the example when the chips are down and Marines need it most,” said Maj. Gen. Brian D. Beaudreault, commanding general of 2nd Marine Division. The Bronze Star, paired with the Combat “V” device, is the fourth highest award given for valor.