Chief Warrant Officer 3 (CW3) Jason Myers was already walking in rarified air being one of the few recipients of a Distinguished Service Cross. Now, the Green Beret is the only active duty soldier to have been awarded the DSC twice.
The Distinguished Service Cross is the nation’s second highest award for Valor ranking just under the Medal of Honor.
Originally awarded a Silver Star for his actions, the Army went thru the records of several awards and recently upgraded them. Myers’ award has been one of those upgraded to his second DSC.
On March 27, 2010, then CW2 Jason Myers of ODA-3321 of the 3rd SFG(A) was awarded the first of his DSCs when rushed into enemy fire to rescue two Afghanistan police officers. Attacked by 75-100 insurgents, he took command of a bad situation and exposed himself to RPG and PKM machine gun fire to move forward to rescue the men.
Later in November of 2011, Myers once again exposed himself repeatedly to enemy fire by entering into a building to help rescue 15 hostages, also in Afghanistan.
About 3:15 p.m. on Nov. 10, 2011, Myers saw the insurgents attacking the district center. He notified the Afghan uniformed police, a special tactics team, and the Afghan National Army Commandos.
Moving toward the west gate of the compound, Myers’ team was attacked by insurgents with small arms fire and grenades. Myers, by this time already wounded by grenade fragments, was consulting with the wounded Afghan district police chief and learned about the hostages. He was also told the insurgents were wearing suicide vests.
Only after rescuing the first nine hostages did Myers allow himself to receive medical aid for his wounds. He then returned to the district center compound with a ladder to help rescue the remaining hostages. During this time the insurgents triggered a booby trap which injured six of the Afghan forces.
Myers helped evacuate the six wounded Afghan allies and helped with the clearing the remaining part of the building. During the pitched battle, five Americans were wounded, while three Afghan soldiers were killed while 11 more were wounded.
“He entered the main building three total times in order to clear it of all enemy fires,” said LTG Francis Beaudette, commander of the U.S. Army Special Operations Command, “All of this was done while sustaining shrapnel injuries and constantly under active enemy fire.”
“Jason has demonstrated on not just these two (Distinguished Service Cross Award) occasions but each and each every day he rolls out of the team room that he has the same fearless courage and unbending character of these men,” Beaudette added. “He’s going to continue to inspire others to protect the nation without fail, without fear and without equal, and we are incredibly proud of him today.”
Myers was surrounded by his family, friends, and fellow Special Forces soldiers for the second time being awarded the nation’s second highest award for valor.
Myers conducted an interview with the Fayetteville Observer after the ceremony and commented on the attack during November 2011.
“I’ve always been fortunate,” Myers said when asked about receiving the Distinguished Service Cross Award twice. “I’ve always been surrounded by the best officers and the best (noncommissioned officers) in the Army. And with multiple deployments to the same area, we knew the locals. We had a lot of rapport and these longstanding relationships with some of these people, so there was a lot of trust and history between us, the locals and the partner forces.”
Beaudette in his comments said that nearly 50 years ago, Green Berets sat in the same auditorium at the JFKSWC and were briefed on a dangerous plan to rescue American POWs in Vietnam. The mission he was referring to was “Operation Ivory Coast” where Green Berets under the command of Colonel Arthur “Bull” Simons flew deep into North Vietnam, just 23 miles west of Hanoi to get American POWs out of Son Tay Prison.
LTG Beaudette compared Myers’ actions to those who stood up and volunteered.
At Myers’ first award of the DSC, Admiral William McRaven, the then commander of USSOCOM summed it up arguably the best when taking into account the actions of Myers on these actions.
“The Green Beret isn’t just a piece of headgear; it is a symbol of all that is good and right about America. It represents the finest Soldiers ever to take the battlefield, he said.
“I want to thank you again for your incredible service to the Regiment, the Army and this great Nation. To the men of 3rd SFG, your reputation continues to grow. Your legacy will be found not in the wars that you fought, but in the men that fought them,” said McRaven. “You and the families that give you strength have earned the respect and admiration of an entire nation.”
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