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Steven A. Rooker


Army Commendation Medal

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Awarded for actions during the Global War on Terror

The Secretary of the Army of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Army Commendation Medal with Combat "V" to Specialist Steven A. Rooker, United States Army, for valorous achievement as a combat Medic in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM XII. While attached to Second Platoon, Specialist Rooker's unwavering courage, aggressiveness, and dedication while under enemy fire saved the life of a fellow paratrooper. His performance in combat reflects great credit upon himself Combined Task Force Fury, Regional Command-South, and the United States Army. NARRATIVE TO ACCOMPANY AWARD: On March 8, 2012, Specialist Rooker's platoon was conducting a combined reconnaissance patrol with Afghan Local Police in the village north of Babaghday. The Village north of Babaghday was a known enemy stronghold, protecting a suspected supply and command and control site. The IED threat in the area was extremely high. Specialist Rooker's maneuver element came under heavy effective enemy fire from three compounds from the north and northwest, momentarily pinning down the patrol behind compounds along the route on which they were traveling. The attack was initiated with small arms and PKM fire which came from five different locations within the three compounds directly to the patrol's north and northwest. The patrol emplaced a machine gun and was able to suppress the enemy enough to allow part of the patrol to begin maneuvering to the enemy's flank. Under fire, Specialist Smith's team maneuvered through a ditch to engage the enemy. When Specialist Smith ran into the ditch following his team, he stepped on an anti-personnel mine. The explosion immediately incapacitated Specialist Smith, amputating one leg and shredding the other. The loud explosion stunned Specialist Rooker, who was still behind cover in the compounds where the patrol was first engaged. Specialist Rooker, without any regard to his own safety, left his covered position and began moving to the location of the blast. He sprinted through ditches moving around members in the patrol suppressing the enemy and avoiding the incoming rounds. He ran over 100 meters under heavy enemy fire before he reached Specialist Smith lying inside the ditch. Instantly he dropped his aid bag and began to assess and stabilize the casualty. Specialist Rooker's instinctive actions allowed the casualty to receive immediate on-site care, saving Specialist Smith's life and preventing any further injury. He continued to administer aid until the Air Medical Evacuation Crew arrived on scene. Specialist Rooker ex-filled with the remainder of the patrol to the strong point. reassuming his duties as the platoon medic. Specialist Rooker displayed valor and courage providing medical aid to a member in Third Squad; his immediate instinct to provide medical treatment under enemy fire saved the life of Specialist Smith.

General Orders: Permanent Order No. 124-008

Action Date: 8-Mar-12

Service: Army

Rank: Specialist

Company: Battery A

Battalion: 2d Battalion

Regiment: 321st Airborne Field Artillery Regiment