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National Guard soldier from Jackson gets combat award

Thursday, June 28, 2012

A Missouri National Guard soldier from Jackson has received a combat award for his actions during a Taliban attack in Afghanistan.

Sgt. 1st Class Dennis C. Allred was awarded the Combat Action Badge for his bravery in an unsuccessful April 15 Taliban attack near Jalalabad, Afghanistan, according to a Missouri National Guard news release. He was one of 23 to receive the award.

Three Guard soldiers were awarded the Army Combat Infantry Badge, two received the Army Combat Medical Badge, five received the Army Commendation Medal with Valor and 15 were awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received in combat. Two guard members -- Senior Airman Brandon Bumbales, of St. Louis, and Master Sgt. Kevin L. Craig, of Mokane -- have been recommended for the Bronze Star with Valor.

Allred is a member of the Missouri Agribusiness Development Team, which arrived in Afghanistan in March. The team has been working with Afghan farmers in Nangarhar province to create a sustainable agriculture program.

"Allred is a great guy. He's old-school Army in his demeanor. He's shorter in stature but has a very commanding presence," said Sgt. 1st Class Joseph Schicker of St. Louis.

"He's a great mentor for the younger troops and is always the guy you can depend on to get a job done," Schicker said.

Schicker is also a member of the Missouri National Guard 70th Troop command and fought alongside Allred during the Taliban attack. Schicker received the Combat Action Badge, Army Commendation Medal with Valor and the Purple Heart for combat wounds.

Taliban insurgents used an improvised explosive device to breach a wall of Forward Operating Base Finley Shields, the base Allred and his team were operating at, according to Missouri guard officials. Taliban fighters then entered the compound and engaged in a firefight with both Afghan army forces and Missouri National Guardsmen. One Afghan soldier was killed and several Missouri Guardsmen were wounded.

"It was very chaotic; the enemy was anywhere from about 10 to 50 feet away," Schicker said.

Schicker said a soldier must be engaged in a firefight with the enemy in order to receive a Combat Action Badge. According to the U.S. Army website describing the honor, the badge provides special recognition to soldiers "who personally engage the enemy, or are engaged by the enemy during combat operations."

"Allred immediately took control of the east side of the building with one of the majors. If they had gotten past Allred, they would have had free reign of the base," Schicker said.

Allred could not be reached because he is deployed in Afghanistan. Attempts to contact his family were unsuccessful.

Below is a list of Missouri Guardsmen who received awards as a result of the attack. The recipients' cities of residence and awards received are also listed.

Sgt. 1st Class Dennis C. Allred, Jackson; Combat Action Badge

Senior Airman Brandon Bumbales, St. Louis; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge, recommended for Bronze Star with Valor

Spc. Daniel F. Burr, Sedgewickville, Mo.: Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge

Sgt. Sean E. Cochran, Jefferson City, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge

Master Sgt. Kevin L. Craig, Mokane, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge, recommended for Bronze Star with Valor

Senior Airman Ryan Derickson, Chillicothe, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Lt. Col. Andre L. Edison, Florissant, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Sgt. Charles B. Gilbert, Meta, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Tech. Sgt. Troy A. Green, Cameron, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Spc. Byron R. Helton, Jefferson City, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge

Spc. Matthew G. Huffman, St. Joseph, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge, Army Commendation Medal with Valor

Sgt. Maj. Phillip M. Lederle, Hartsburg, Mo.; Combat Action Badge, Army Commendation Medal with Valor

Sgt. Derek M. Logsdon, Bevier, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Sgt. Robert E. Mathis, Jr., Monett, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Spc. Joshua D. O'Donnell, St. Charles, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge, Army Commendation Medal with Valor

Spc. Arthur J. Johnson, Eldon, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Infantry Badge

Sgt. John K. Larson Jr., Nevada, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Infantry Badge

Spc. Richard A. Messenger, Kansas City, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Medical Badge, Army Commendation Medal with Valor

Sgt. 1st Class Jeffory S. Owens, Marshfield, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Sgt. Nicholas A. Rowden, Vienna, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Spc. Daniel L. Sadler, St. Joseph, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge

Spc. Michael L. Saunders, Auxvasse, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge

Maj. Dominic G. Sansone, O'Fallon, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Sgt. 1st Class Joseph M. Schicker, St. Louis; Purple Heart, Combat Infantry Badge, Army Commendation Medal with Valor

Spc. Bobby L. Smith, Linneus, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Sgt. Keith S. Truelove, De Soto, Mo.; Combat Action Badge

Sgt. 1st Class Alexander Worth, Kansas City, Mo.; Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge

Sgt. Charles N. Bradley, Blue Springs, Mo.; Combat Medical Badge

rovermann@semissourian.com

388-3688

Pertinent address:

Jalalabad, Afghanistan


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God Bless you ALL!! Thank you all for your service to my family....and our country!

-- Posted by whyowhy on Wed, Jun 27, 2012, at 6:55 PM


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