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11th Marine Expeditionary Unit
I Marine Expeditionary Force

Jan 28, 2005

FORWARD OPERATING BASE HOTEL, Iraq ? Cpl. Peter R. Izzo, a Marine Corps infantryman currently deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, displays the Bronze Star Medal he was awarded during a ceremony here Jan. 28, 2005. The 20-year-old Richfield Springs, N.Y., native received the medal for his heroic actions as a squad leader with 1st Platoon, Company C, Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable), during combat operations in Najaf, Iraq, in August. ?I wasn?t thinking we were going to do anything big,? said Izzo, who led a four-man fire team during the three-week assault on the militia of radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. ?I was just concerned about my guys. I didn?t want anything to happen to them.? The following is from Izzo?s award citation: ?Cpl. Izzo displayed exceptional courage, dedication, and leadership during 55 hours of intense fighting against the Mahdi Militia in and around Najaf cemetery?His skill enabled the platoon to defend the Iraqi Police headquarters from a large enemy attack, despite a constant barrage of enemy sniper and deadly accurate mortar fire. During the unit?s counter-attack, he led Marines in destroying well-prepared enemy positions and repulsing enemy attacks at ranges of 10 meters. At one point, with the squad pinned down under intense enemy fire, he maneuvered alone to within 15 meters of one such position and eliminated four insurgents with two separate grenade attacks. The following day, despite the exhaustion of near constant fighting in 115 degree temperatures, his courage was proven again as he killed three enemy snipers in a four story building 200 to 300 meters away with his grenade launcher. These actions allowed the previously pinned-down Marines of his unit to continue their attack and secure the unit?s final objective. His courage and actions while under intense enemy fire inspired the Marines in his charge and spearheaded the Battalion?s assau

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