Staff Sgt. John Williams
81mm Section Leader, SPMAGTF-CR-CC
Operation Inherent Resolve
May 5, 2018
Staff Sergeant Williams was manning a heavy machine gun at an observation post in northeast Syria when his position came under enemy combined arms attack. While receiving mortar and machine gun fire, he identified mounted and dismounted enemy fighters advancing on his position. Using his machine gun, he suppressed the enemy targets as well as communicated to his section the location of additional enemy targets. In the midst of the battle, Staff Sergeant Williams’ vehicle front wheel was struck by an anti-tank guided missile causing serious shrapnel wounds to his driver and injuries to all in close proximity of the blast. Despite his own concussion and effective enemy fire, Staff Sergeant Williams climbed out of the vehicle, applied multiple tourniquets to both legs of the driver and carried him to the casualty collection point. After returning. to his vehicle, he retrieved as many sensitive items from within the vehicle before a second missile struck the ground within 50 meters of his position. Immediately, he withdrew his section under fire while friendly close air support provided cover. Staff Sergeant Williams’ distinctive contributions, unrelenting perseverance, and steadfast devotion to duty reflected.great credit upon him and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.
Photo by Lance Cpl. Rachel Young-Porter