Ty Carter

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Ty Michael Carter
Ty Carter portrait.jpg
Born (1980-01-25) 25 January 1980 (age 38)
Spokane, Washington
Allegiance United States of America
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
 United States Army
Years of service1998–2002 (USMC)
2008–2014 (USA)
RankArmy-USA-OR-06.svg Staff Sergeant
Unit61 Cav Rgt DUI.jpg 61st Cavalry Regiment
4th Infantry Division SSI (1918-2015).svg 4th Infantry Division
7th Infantry Division DUI.svg 7th Infantry Division
Battles/warsWar in Afghanistan
AwardsMedal of Honor ribbon.svg Medal of Honor
Purple Heart ribbon.svg Purple Heart
Combat Action Badge.svg Combat Action Badge
Spouse(s)Divorced [1]

Ty Michael Carter (born 25 January 1980) is a United States Army soldier and Medal of Honor recipient. He was awarded the United States of America's highest military honor for his actions at the 2009 Battle of Kamdesh in Afghanistan. Carter left active duty in September 2014.

Personal life[edit]

Carter was born in Spokane, Wash., on January 25, 1980, and moved to California’s Bay Area in 1981. In 1991, his family moved back to Spokane, where he graduated from North Central High School in 1998. He later settled in Antioch, California[2] until he enlisted in the US Marine Corps

Military career[edit]

Carter enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps October 13, 1998, and attended the Marine Corps Combat Engineer School. He later served in Okinawa, Japan, as an intelligence clerk. Carter showed promise in weapons’ marksmanship and was sent to Primary Marksmanship Instructor School in 1999. He served two short training deployments; one to San Clemente Island, Calif., and the other to Egypt, for Operation Bright Star. Carter was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps on 12 October 2002.

After his enlistment,Carter enrolled in college and studied biology at Los Medanos Community College in California where he met and began dating April Ait in early 2004. April soon became pregnant and they were married shortly thereafter. After the birth of their daughter Madison, some time traveling the United States, and subsequent divorce, Carter opted to join the U.S. Army.

Carter enlisted in the U.S. Army in January 2008 as a cavalry scout and received training at Fort Knox, Kentucky. From May 2009 to May 2010, he was deployed to Afghanistan with Bravo Troop, 3rd Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.[2]

In October 2010, Carter was assigned as a Stryker gunner with the 8th Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington. He was deployed to Afghanistan a second time in October 2012 and was thereafter stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord with the 7th Infantry Division.[2] Carter works to destigmatize posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a condition from which he has suffered.[3][4] He left active duty in September 2014.[5]

Medal of Honor action[edit]

U.S. President Barack Obama places the Medal of Honor around Carter's neck during an 26 August 2013 White House ceremony.

While on his first deployment in Afghanistan, Carter was stationed at Combat Outpost (COP) Keating in Kamdesh District, Nuristan Province. On 3 October 2009, the outpost came under heavy attack and Carter, then a specialist, distinguished himself in what came to be known as the Battle of Kamdesh.[6][7]

According to the detailed Official Narrative from the U.S. Army, more than 300 enemy fighters attacked COP Keating from surrounding high ground before 6 a.m.[8] Under intense fire, Carter carried ammunition 100 meters across open ground from near his barracks to a Humvee at the south Battle Position, soon returning across the same distance to retrieve machine gun oil and more ammunition, and traverse that distance a third time to thus resupply the Battle Position.[8] Though wounded within the first half-hour of battle, Carter provided accurate fire under intense pressure to drive back enemy that had infiltrated the camp perimeter.[8] He then crawled under continuing fire to another vehicle, and retrieved needed weapons and ammunition to bring back to the Battle Position.[8] Carter crossed 30 meters of open space to provide life-extending first aid to a wounded soldier, exposed to enemy fire, then carrying him back across the 30 meters to the Humvee.[8] As the battle progressed, Carter ran toward the tactical operations center (TOC) to coordinate reconnaissance and to obtain medical care for the wounded soldier, but, encountering the body of a fallen sergeant, found and retrieved a radio and returned to the Humvee.[8] Carter found a litter, and with a comrade carried the wounded soldier 100 meters across the original distance to an aid station; it was then about noon.[8] The battle extended through nightfall when reinforcements could safely land by helicopter, by which time almost two-thirds of the 53 Coalition soldiers had been killed (8) or wounded (>25).[8]

President Barack Obama awarded Carter with the Medal of Honor in a White House ceremony on 26 August 2013.[2] The following day, Carter was inducted into the Pentagon Hall of Heroes.[9]

Awards and decorations[edit]

During his military career, Carter received a number of decorations.[10] Carter is authorized to wear two service stripes, three Overseas Service Bars, as well as the Combat Service Identification Badge for the 4th Infantry Division and the Distinctive Unit Insignia of the 61st Cavalry Regiment. Carter's military decorations include the following awards:

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Oak leaf cluster, bronze.svgOak leaf cluster, bronze.svgOak leaf cluster, bronze.svgOak leaf cluster, bronze.svg Oak leaf cluster, bronze.svgOak leaf cluster, bronze.svg
Award numeral 2.png
Award numeral 3.png
US Army Expert Marksmanship Qualification Badge-Generic.png
Right breast Left breast
Valorous Unit Award Meritorious Unit Commendation[2]
Combat Action Badge[2]
Medal of Honor Purple Heart Medal Meritorious Service Medal[5]
Army Commendation Medal w/four bronze Oak Leaf Clusters Army Achievement Medal w/two Oak Leaf Clusters Army Good Conduct Medal w/2 bronze loops
Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal[5] National Defense Service Medal Afghanistan Campaign Medal w/2 service stars
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal[11] Global War on Terrorism Service Medal NCO Professional Development Ribbon w/award numeral 2
Army Service Ribbon Army Overseas Service Ribbon with bronze award numeral 3 NATO Medal for service with ISAF
Air Assault Badge Expert marksmanship badge with one weapon clasp

Medal of Honor citation[edit]

Carter with U.S. President Barack Obama in the East Room of the White House after Carter was presented with the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry.
A light blue neck ribbon with a gold star-shaped medallion hanging from it. The ribbon is similar in shape to a bowtie with 13 white stars in the center of the ribbon.

Specialist Ty M. Carter distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a Scout with Bravo Troop, 3d Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, during combat operations against an armed enemy in Kamdesh District, Nuristan Province, Afghanistan on October 3, 2009. On that morning, Specialist Carter and his comrades awakened to an attack of an estimated 300 enemy fighters occupying the high ground on all four sides of Combat Outpost Keating, employing concentrated fire from recoilless rifles, rocket propelled grenades, anti-aircraft machine guns, mortars and small arms fire. Specialist Carter reinforced a forward battle position, ran twice through a 100 meter gauntlet of enemy fire to resupply ammunition and voluntarily remained there to defend the isolated position. Armed with only an M4 carbine rifle, Specialist Carter placed accurate, deadly fire on the enemy, beating back the assault force and preventing the position from being overrun, over the course of several hours. With complete disregard for his own safety and in spite of his own wounds, he ran through a hail of enemy rocket propelled grenade and machine gun fire to rescue a critically wounded comrade who had been pinned down in an exposed position. Specialist Carter rendered life extending first aid and carried the Soldier to cover. On his own initiative, Specialist Carter again maneuvered through enemy fire to check on a fallen Soldier and recovered the squad’s radio, which allowed them to coordinate their evacuation with fellow Soldiers. With teammates providing covering fire, Specialist Carter assisted in moving the wounded Soldier 100 meters through withering enemy fire to the aid station and before returning to the fight. Specialist Carter’s heroic actions and tactical skill were critical to the defense of Combat Outpost Keating, preventing the enemy from capturing the position and saving the lives of his fellow Soldiers. Specialist Ty M. Carter’s extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, Bravo Troop, 3d Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division and the United States Army.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ https://www.stripes.com/news/us/home-free-home-texas-nonprofit-builds-house-for-medal-of-honor-recipient-1.532938
  2. ^ a b c d e f "President Obama to Award Medal of Honor". Washington, D.C.: White House Office of the Press Secretary. 26 July 2013. Archived from the original on 26 August 2013. Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  3. ^ Tapper, Jake; Escobedo, Tricia (21 August 2013). "After giving the military a second try, soldier to receive top honor". CNN. Archived from the original on 26 August 2013.
  4. ^ Marth C. Koester (18 February 2014). "Soldiers with post-traumatic stress have a champion in MOH recipient Carter". NCO Journal. Retrieved 6 November 2017. Though the Battle of Kamdesh resulted in the highest military honor for Carter, it also brought a far more personal challenge that he continues to deal with ─ post traumatic stress.
  5. ^ a b c http://www.army.mil/article/134815/Medal_of_Honor_recipient_transitions_to_civilian_life/
  6. ^ Dickson, Patrick (26 July 2013). "Ty M. Carter to receive Medal of Honor for actions in Afghanistan". Stars and Stripes. Washington. Archived from the original on 26 July 2013.
  7. ^ Jakob, Rodgers (14 February 2013). "Soldiers reunite to pay tribute to fallen comrade Spc. Stephan Mace". Stars and Stripes. Washington. Archived from the original on 26 July 2013.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h "Official Narrative / Staff Sergeant Ty Michael Carter". U.S. Army. 2013. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016.
  9. ^ Ferdinando, Lisa A. (27 August 2013). "MOH recipient Staff Sgt. Carter inducted into Pentagon Hall of Heroes". U.S. Army. Archived from the original on 30 August 2013.
  10. ^ Brown, Brittany (26 August 2013). "12 Facts about Medal of Honor recipient Staff Sgt. Ty Carter". Army Live website. United States Army. Archived from the original on 26 August 2013.
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ "Staff Sergeant Ty M. Carter:Official Citation". United States Army. Archived from the original on 10 November 2015. Retrieved 26 August 2013.

External links[edit]