Guard unit receives award for extraordinary service
Charlie Company, 3-172nd Mountain Infantry Regiment receive the Valorous Unit Award on Saturday for extraordinary actions while on combat missions in Afghanistan during deployment in 2010-11. (NANCY BEAN FOSTER/Union Leader Correspondent)
Despite the impending snowstorm, more than 100 friends, family members and officials - including Gov. Maggie Hassan, U.S. Sens. Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte and U.S. Rep. Annie Kuster - were on hand as members of Charlie Company, 3-172nd Mountain Infantry Regiment, received the award for their actions while on combat missions in Afghanistan.
Under the leadership of Capt. Daniel Newman and 1st Sgt. Glen Drewniak, Charlie Company participated in the first air assault mission launched by the 3rd Battalion and the New Hampshire National Guard and according to Ayotte participated in four more air assaults during their deployment.
Through their bravery, Charlie Company helped make sure that Afghanistan can't become "a launching pad again for terrorists" like those who perpetrated the attacks on the United States on Sept. 11, 2001.
Reddell spoke of the night in 2010 when more than 1,000 people gathered in the Milford Middle School to say so long to Charlie Company as members prepared to leave for Afghanistan. That night, Reddel said, Newman told his warriors that he wouldn't ask them to do anything he wouldn't do and explained that the members of Charlie Company represented a true cross-section of people in New Hampshire.
During the deployment, members of Charlie Company earned 14 Bronze Stars, five Purple Hearts, five Commendation medals with Combat Distinguishing Valor Devices, 92 Combat Infantryman badges, 40 Combat Action badges and four Combat Medical badges.
"This is what true heroism looks like. It keeps us safe and free," said Kuster. "I hope none of us ever takes that for granted."
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