Philadelphia native Cpl. Jason M. Hassinger (center right), receives the Silver Star from Maj. Gen. John A. Toolan, the outgoing commanding general of 2nd Marine Division during the 2nd Marine Division change-of-command ceremony Aug. 23 aboard Camp Lejeune. Hassinger received the Silver Star for his actions during an ambushed patrol in Marjah, Helmand province, Afghanistan, in which he led his section through intense fire to rescue a group of fellow Marines pinned down by the enemy. Hassinger was shot four times during the incident but continued to fight until the enemy retreated. The Silver Star is the third-highest award a U.S. service member can receive for valor in combat. Photo by Cpl. Tommy Bellegarde / U.S. Marine Corps. Click for a larger image.
U.S. Marine Corps
By Cpl. Tommy Bellegarde, 2nd Marine Division
When a patrol of Marines from 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division; Afghan National Army soldiers and Afghan National Civil Order Police patrolmen was ambushed by insurgents March 5, 2011, Cpl. Jason M. Hassinger quickly realized that many of his comrades were trapped, unable to maneuver or engage the attacking enemy. The Marines requested air support, but it was not immediately available, so Hassinger led his section through the gunfire to rescue his trapped brothers in arms.