Scheduled to begin at 3:30 pm
President Trump will posthumously award the Medal of Honor to Air Force Sgt. John Chapman, who gave his life to save fellow service members on a mountain in Afghanistan in 2002.
Trump will present the award to Chapman’s family Wednesday. He will be the first airman to receive the award since the Vietnam War. The sergeant was a native of Windsor Locks, Conn. and the father of two young girls.
The U.S. Air Force released an aerial video several weeks ago showing Chapman’s heroics during the hand-to-hand combat on Takur Ghar, a 10,000-foot mountain. The video showed Chapman charging the enemy on the peak. He joined Navy SEALs in an effort to recover a wounded comrade who had fallen from an aircraft after it was hit with a rocket-propelled grenade.
Chapman “charged into enemy fire through harrowing conditions,” seized a bunker and killed its occupants, according to the White House. In an ensuing firefight with Al Qaeda militants, he was severely wounded but continued to fight until he was killed.
Britt K. Slabinski, a retired member of SEAL Team 6, who received the Medal of Honor in May for his heroics during the same 14-hour battle, believed Chapman was dead, and moved the team — including someone with a serious leg injury — off the battlefield, the New York Times reported.
Chapman, 36, regained consciousness and fought for an hour after being gunned down by Al Qaeda militants. He managed to kill two more enemies before he was killed on March 4, 2002.