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Life and Military Service of 2005 JINSA Grateful Nation Honoree Depicted in American Sniper

January 30, 2015

kyleSince 2003, JINSA has presented the Grateful Nation Award annually to six young heroes recognized for having distinguished themselves through superior conduct in the War on Terror. This award is given to a representative of each branch of the U.S. military and the U.S. Special Operations Command.

In 2005, the Grateful Nation Award Special Operations Command honoree was Chief Petty Officer Chris Kyle, USN, whose life and military service are featured in the blockbuster movie, American Sniper. Until his passing in 2013, Chris remained a close, active, and beloved member of the JINSA family. In fact, he included the photo to the right in his New York Times best-selling book.

Below is his citation for the award in 2005:

During the period of November 1 to December 1, 2004, Petty Officer Second Class Christopher Kyle, a Navy SEAL, displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action during operations against the enemy as a SEAL Sniper in direct support of Third Battalion, Fifth Marines, Regimental Combat Team 1, First Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, deployed in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Al Fajr.

Throughout 20 days of combat operations in the city of Al Fallujah, his professionalism and expertise served as an example to other SEALs within his team and the Marines he fought alongside and supported. Petty Officer Kyle selflessly exposed himself to enemy fire on a daily basis in order to engage enemy fighters. He repeatedly and aggressively placed himself in harm’s way in an attempt to engage and kill the enemy, as well as provide aid to wounded Marines.

Petty Officer Kyle’s selfless bravery, courage, leadership, and aggressiveness in close combat with the enemy were an inspiration the Marines around him. His calm demeanor, confidence, and natural leadership while under fire were in keeping with the finest tradition of Naval Special Warfare.

Intelligence Specialist Second Class Kyle’s initiative, maturity, and combat leadership reflected great credit upon himself and he is most deserving of the special recognition afforded by the JINSA Grateful Nation Award.

JINSA is committed to supporting the brave servicemen and women who sacrifice so much to defend America, and we do this in many ways including JINSA’s annual Deserving Soldiers Holiday Appeal, our visits to American military bases, and our programs such as the Generals and Admirals Program and the Military Academies Program.

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