Jared C. Monti

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Jared C. Monti
A man in his camoflouge military uniform wearing a scarf around his neck. He is looking at the camera and has his hands in his pockets. Several mountains are visible in the background.   Cmoh army.jpg
Monti in Afghanistan, in May 2006.
Born (1975-09-20)September 20, 1975
Abington, Massachusetts, U.S.
Died June 21, 2006(2006-06-21) (aged 30)
Gowardesh, Afghanistan
Buried at

Massachusetts National Cemetery

Bourne, Massachusetts, U.S.
Allegiance  United States of America
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service 1993 - 2006
Rank Army-USA-OR-07.svg Sergeant First Class
Unit 10th Mountain Division SSI.svg3rd Squadron, 71st Cavalry, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division
Battles/wars War in Afghanistan
Awards Medal of Honor ribbon.svg Medal of Honor
Bronze Star ribbon.svg Bronze Star
Purple Heart BAR.svg Purple Heart

Jared Christopher Monti (September 20, 1975 – June 21, 2006) was a soldier in the United States Army who received the United States military's highest decoration for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his actions in Afghanistan.

Monti was deployed with his unit when they were attacked by a group of enemy insurgents. When another soldier was wounded, Monti attempted to rescue him three times and was killed in action. The President signed the authorization for Monti to receive the Medal of Honor and the medal was presented to his family in a ceremony at the White House in 2009. It was the first Medal of Honor presentation during Obama's presidency. Monti was the sixth person from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to be awarded the Medal of Honor.

Early life[edit]

Jared C. Monti, as a young boy

Monti was born in Abington, Massachusetts, on September 20, 1975, to Paul, a school teacher, and Janet Monti.[1][2] He grew up in Raynham, Massachusetts and even as a child the adventurous character that would later earn him the Medal of Honor was already apparent. As a four-year-old, he disappeared from the backyard one day, and his mother found him later on hanging by the hood of his sweatshirt on the other side of the fence. On another occasion, a migraine headache kept him home from school, but he left the house and was later found climbing a tree.[3] In 1994 he graduated from Bridgewater-Raynham Regional High School at the age of 18.[2] Monti had two siblings, a sister, Nicole and a brother, Timothy.[4]

Military service[edit]

Sergeant 1st Class Jared C. Monti with his team members

After enlisting in the Army in March 1993, he completed basic training and forward observer training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma [5] and continued his training as a paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne Division.[2] Monti, a fire support specialist, served as a staff sergeant and Fire Support Team sergeant with the 3rd Squadron, 71st Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division.[1][6] Previous to his service in Afghanistan he was deployed to Kosovo, where he sustained injuries while sky diving. He rejected a medical discharge and reenlisted to deploy with his unit to Afghanistan in February 2006, as part of Task Force Spartan.[3]

Medal of Honor action[edit]

On June 21, 2006, Monti served as the assistant leader of a 16-man patrol and leader of a weapons forward observer team tasked with gathering intelligence in Gowardesh, Nuristan Province, in northeastern Afghanistan. The team established a small base on a ridge to support a larger Army operation in the valley below. When the larger operation was delayed, Monti's team ran low on provisions. The helicopter that brought supplies revealed the team's position.[7]

That evening, the patrol was attacked by a group of at least 60 insurgents, who had established two positions on a wooded ridge about 50-yards above the patrol and attempted to outflank Monti and his team. The Americans took cover and returned fire, and Monti radioed for artillery and close air support. Enemy fire killed Staff Sergeant Patrick Lybert. Another soldier, Specialist Brian J. Bradbury, was severely wounded and left lying in the open between the enemy and the team's position. Staff Sergeant Chris Cunningham, leader of the patrol's sniper team, called out that he was going to try to rescue Bradbury. Monti replied, "That’s my guy. I am going to get him."[7]

Monti made three attempts to reach Bradbury. On his first, he advanced to within three feet of Bradbury before being forced back by intense machine-gun and rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) fire. His second try was similarly turned back and as the rest of his patrol provided covering fire, Monti advanced a third time but was struck by an RPG. Some news reports indicated that the explosion blew off both of his legs,[8] but this is not supported by family accounts or military records. Monti attempted to crawl back towards cover. He is reported by comrades to have made his peace with God and asked Sgt. Cunningham to tell his parents he loved them. Monti died moments later.[9] At about the same time, the artillery and air support for which he had called began hitting the enemy position, killing 22 of the attackers and dispersing the rest.[6][7]

SPC Bradbury subsequently died during his evacuation when the cable on the rescue hoist lifting him to a 159th Medical Company (Air Ambulance) helicopter broke. The fall also killed Staff Sergeant Heathe Craig, 28, a medic from Severn, Maryland.[8][10]

Burial and Medal of Honor ceremony[edit]

Monti's parents receive his Medal of Honor from President Barack Obama during a ceremony in the White House, September 17, 2009.

Monti is buried in section 11, site 38 of the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne, Massachusetts. The Army posthumously promoted him to sergeant first class.[11]

On July 24, 2009 President Barack Obama signed the authorization for Monti to receive the Medal of Honor for this action. The medal was presented to the family by the President in a formal ceremony at the White House on September 17, 2009.[5] Monti is the 3,448th recipient of the honor since the medal was established by the U.S. Congress during the American Civil War.[12] Additionally, he is the second Medal of Honor recipient from the conflict in Afghanistan, after Navy SEAL Michael P. Murphy, who received the medal in 2007.[1]

Military awards[edit]

SFC Monti's personal decorations include:

Combat Action Badge.svg
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze oak leaf cluster
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Award numeral 2.png
Award numeral 3.png
Bronze star
United States Air Force Parachutist Badge.svg AirAssault.svg

In addition to the Medal of Honor, Monti's awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Army Commendation Medal (5), Army Achievement Medal (4), Good Conduct Medal (4), National Defense Service Medal (2), Korean Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (2), Kosovo Campaign Medal (2), Non-Commissioned Officer Development Ribbon (2), Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal (2), and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Combat Action Badge, Parachutist Badge, and Air Assault Badge.[13]

Badges[edit]

U.S. badges, patches and tabs
Combat Action Badge.svg Combat Action Badge
AirAssault.svg Air Assault Badge
United States Air Force Parachutist Badge.svg Army Parachutist Badge
10MountainDivCSIB.jpg 10TH Mountain Infantry Patch (left arm) Shoulder Sleeve Insignia and (right arm) Shoulder Sleeve Insignia - Former War Time Service (SSI-FWTS)
71 Cav Rgt DUI.jpg 71st Cavalry Regiment Distinctive Unit Insignia

Medal of Honor citation[edit]

Cmoh army.jpg

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty.
Sergeant First Class Monti distinguished himself at the cost of his life while serving as a team leader with the Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 3d Squadron, 71st Cavalry Regiment in Nuristan Province, Afghanistan on 21 June 2006. On that day, Sergeant First Class Monti was leading a mission to gather intelligence and to direct fires against the enemy in support of a squadron-size interdiction mission. While at an observation position on top of a mountain ridge, Sergeant First Class Monti’s sixteen-man patrol came under attack by a superior force consisting of as many as 50 enemy fighters. On the verge of being overrun, Sergeant First Class Monti directed his patrol to set up a hasty defensive position behind a collection of rocks. He then began to call for indirect fire from a nearby support base; accurately bringing the rounds upon the enemy who had closed to within 50 meters of his position. While still calling for fire, Sergeant First Class Monti personally engaged the enemy with his rifle and a grenade, successfully disrupting an attempt to flank the patrol. Sergeant First Class Monti then realized that one of his Soldiers was lying wounded and exposed in the open ground between the advancing enemy and the patrol’s position. With complete disregard for his own safety, Sergeant First Class Monti moved from behind the cover of the rocks into the face of withering enemy fire. After closing within meters of his wounded Soldier, the heavy volume of fire forced Sergeant First Class Monti to seek cover. Sergeant First Class Monti then gathered himself and rose again to maneuver through a barrage of enemy fire to save his wounded Soldier. Again, Sergeant First Class Monti was driven back by relentless enemy fire. Unwilling to leave his Soldier wounded and exposed, Sergeant First Class Monti made another attempt to move across open terrain and through the enemy fire to the aide of his wounded Soldier. On his third attempt, Sergeant First Class Monti was mortally wounded, sacrificing his own life in an effort to save his Soldier. Sergeant First Class Monti’s acts of heroism inspired the patrol to fight off the larger enemy force. Sergeant First Class Monti’s immeasurable courage and uncommon valor were in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, 3d Squadron 71st Cavalry Regiment, the 3d Brigade Combat Team, the 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), and the United States Army.[8]

Other honors[edit]

A street marker in Raynham bears Monti's name

On January 13, 2009, Marc R. Pacheco submitted a petition to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to designate a state owned bridge in the town of Raynham as the SFC Jared C. Monti Bridge. The motion passed and the state Senate approved for the bridge to be renamed.[11]

A call-for-fire training facility at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, where Monti trained, will be named in his honor.[3][6]

The former Pine Plains Fitness Center on Fort Drum has been renamed the Monti Fitness Facility in honor of SFC Jared C. Monti.

In May, 2013, Connie Harrington, songwriter of Lee Brice's number one country hit "I Drive Your Truck," revealed that she wrote the song after listening to Monti's father, Paul, on the public radio program Here & Now. It was Paul Monti's answer to Here & Now when asked what he did to reconnect with his memory.[14]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Cavallaro, Gina (July 23, 2009). "Fallen soldier to receive Medal of Honor". Army Times. Retrieved July 23, 2009. 
  2. ^ a b c Weinstein, Susan Parkou (July 23, 2009). "Raynham’s Jared C. Monti posthumously awarded Congressional Medal of Honor". The Daily News Tribune. Retrieved July 23, 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c "Raynham's Jared C. Monti awarded Congressional Medal of Honor posthumously". Wicked local Raynham news. Gatehouse Media, Inc. July 23, 2009. Retrieved January 15, 2010. 
  4. ^ "White House press release". Statements and Releases. White House, Office of the Press Secretary. July 24, 2009. Retrieved January 15, 2010. 
  5. ^ a b "President Obama To Award Medal of Honor". whitehouse.gov. July 24, 2009. Retrieved July 24, 2009. 
  6. ^ a b c "SFC Jared C. Monti—A Redleg Hero". FIRES Bulletin. United States Army. March–April 2009. Retrieved July 23, 2009. 
  7. ^ a b c Cahn, Dianna, "Jared Monti’s soldiers watched him give his life, and it changed theirs", Stars and Stripes, September 17, 2009.
  8. ^ a b c Bender, Bryan, "He could not leave a comrade behind", Boston Globe, September 6, 2009, p. 1.
  9. ^ Military Official Narrative, "[1]"
  10. ^ "Defense link casualty report". DoD Identifies Army Casualties. Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs). June 23, 2006. Retrieved January 15, 2010. 
  11. ^ a b "Jared Christopher Monti". Jared Christopher Monti. Find a Grave.com. June 23, 2006. Retrieved July 23, 2009. 
  12. ^ Phillips, Michael M., "Soldier To Receive Medal of Honor", Wall Street Journal, September 17, 2009, p. 5.
  13. ^ "GI to Get MoH for Valor in Afghanistan". Stars and Stripes. July 25, 2009. Retrieved August 1, 2009. 
  14. ^ "A Songwriter And An Army Dad Share One Touching Story". All Things Considered. National Public Radio. Retrieved 16 May 2013. 

References[edit]

  • "Defense link casualty report". DoD Identifies Army Casualties. Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs). June 23, 2006. Retrieved January 15, 2010. 
  • Phillips, Michael M., "Soldier To Receive Medal of Honor", Wall Street Journal, September 17, 2009.
  • "White House press release". Statements and Releases. White House, Office of the Press Secretary. July 24, 2009. Retrieved January 15, 2010. 

External links[edit]