Thursday, January 10, 2008

Purple Heart Awarded 2LT Ruel A/1/278th RCT

The third recipient was 2nd Lt. Christopher Ruel from Britain, Conn., a 19A tank commander who was an augmentee to the 278th Brigade Combat Team. He was assigned to the same patrol as Betterton when their unit was ambushed.
He dismounted his vehicle to organize the unit and take a better position to return fire. As the firefight wore on, Ruel was alerted to Betterton’s injuries in the drainage ditch and moved to that position to assist his fellow Soldier. Upon returning fire, he was struck in the shoulder by the enemy.
At the end of the ceremony, not only was each Soldier awarded a Purple Heart, they were given a coin from BG Schoomaker on behalf of the Army Medical Corps and a standing ovation from the crowd.

Wounded in APR 4th action in the same firefight as Sgt Betterton.

Longer article with photo of SGT Betterton and 2LT Ruel (SSG Jason Smith)