Saturday, May 31, 2008
By DAN NEPHIN, Associated Press Writer
SHIPPENVILLE, Pa. — Growing up in a small rural town, Ross McGinnis was more apt to get in trouble than on the honor roll. So he enlisted in the Army, and in just under a year found his soul mate, a brotherhood, and even himself.
"I just cannot wait for the day when I can connect all 3 lives into one," McGinnis wrote on his MySpace page. "But that day will not be for a long time."
The 19-year-old private first class never got that chance.
He was in the gunner's hatch of a Humvee on Dec. 4, 2006, when a grenade sailed past him and into the vehicle where four other soldiers sat. He shouted a warning, then jumped back-first onto the grenade, which blew up and killed him.
On Monday, he will be posthumously presented the nation's highest military award, the Medal of Honor.
"Ross was a hero, I mean, he was honestly the type of soldier that was trustworthy, that was reliable, that was dependable before combat. He loved doing what he was doing," said Ian Newland, one of the soldiers McGinnis saved.
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