29 years old from Patchogue, New York
SEAL Delivery Vehicle Team 1
June 28, 2005
On Monday, October 22, Lt. Michael P. Murphy was posthumously awarded the Medal Of Honor. His father and mother accepted the award. Lt. Murphy received the award for his extraordinary, selfless heroism and steadfast courage while leading a four-man, special reconnaissance mission deep behind enemy lines east of Asadabad in the Hindu Kush of Afghanistan June 27 to 28, 2005
"We are thrilled by the President's announcement today, especially because there is now a public recognition of what we knew all along about Michael's loyalty, devotion and sacrifice to his friends, family, country, and especially his SEAL teammates," the Murphy family said in a statement released earlier in the month. "The honor is not just about Michael, it is about his teammates and those who lost their lives that same day."
Murphy was the officer-in-charge of the SEAL element, which was tasked with locating a high- level Taliban militia leader to provide intelligence for a follow-on mission to capture or destroy the local leadership and disrupt enemy activity. Taliban sympathizers discovered the SEAL unit and immediately revealed their position to Taliban fighters. The element was besieged on a mountaintop by scores of enemy fighters. The firefight that ensued pushed the element farther into enemy territory and left all four SEALs wounded. The SEALs fought with everything they had. despite being at a tactical disadvantage and outnumbered more than four to one. Understanding the gravity of the situation and his responsibility to his men, Murphy, already wounded, deliberately and unhesitatingly moved from cover into the open where he took and returned fire while transmitting a call for help for his beleaguered teammates. Shot through the back while radioing for help, Murphy completed his transmission while returning fire. The call ultimately led to the rescue of one severely wounded team member, Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Marcus Luttrell, and the recovery of the remains of Murphy and Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class (SEAL) Danny Dietz and Sonar Technician 2nd Class (SEAL) Matthew Axelson.
Eight more SEALs and eight Army "Nightstalker" special operations personnel comprising the initial reinforcement also lost their lives when their helicopter was shot down before they could engage the enemy.
Murphy was also inducted into the Hall of Heroes at the Pentagon. His name will be engraved beside the names of some 3,400 other service members who have also been awarded the nation’s highest honor.
These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives
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