DVIDS Story by Maj. Khalid Cannon Facing a wave of enemy Communist forces, and knowing that staying behind to tend to wounded brothers would lead to his capture, Army Chaplain (Capt.) Emil J. Kapaun disregarded the evacuation order and willingly risked his life to help those in need.
Patrolling between a tree line and a row of buildings, Staff Sgt. Timothy Williams and his squad heard the sharp cracks of rifles and immediately realized they were being ambushed. Outnumbered and under heavy enemy fire, Williams, a section leader with 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, found himself relying on his instincts and training to protect himself and his Marines.
“Steinkamp demonstrated all the skills of the Marine squad leader in a very long day of combat in Afghanistan,” said Brig. Gen. James Lukeman, commanding general of 2nd Marine Division. “From planning the mission, maneuvering his squad, coming into contact with the enemy, setting up supporting fire positions and engaging the enemy, down to close combat with grenades, calling in (medical evacuations), and calling in Cobra (helicopters), he showed the courage and heroism which earned him this Silver Star.”
The Wichita Eagle reports that Emil Kapaun, serving as a Roman Catholic chaplain, will be awarded the Medal of Honor on April 11, 2013, for his valor during the Korean War.