Cpl. William Kyle Carpenter, who was severely wounded during a 2010 grenade attack, is set to become the third Medal of Honor recipient from the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.
“We knew the area we were moving into was one of the rougher areas. … The grenade hit … and our Marines do what they do best — they took care of us and they kept us alive,” he told the Army Times.
Cpl. Carpenter, 24, suffered the loss of his right eye, a blown-out eardrum, a “pretty much blown off” lower jaw and various other broken bones. Damage to the soldier’s frontal lobe also left him unable to speak until just recently.
“Grenade blasts blow up, they don’t blow down,” Hospitalman 3rd Class Christopher Frend, who treated the injured soldiers after the blast, told Marine Corps Times in 2012. “If he hadn’t [covered the grenade with his torso], what we found would have looked completely different.”
Cpl. Carpenter must now wait for the Marine Corps to finalize details with the White House, the Army Times reported. While the White House would not yet comment, the Times noted that typically such announcements are made with only a month’s notice.
“I’m still here and kicking and I have all my limbs, so you’ll never hear me complain,” he said.