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Gunnery Sgt Aaron Michael Kenefick

Embedded Training Team 2-8, Okinawa Japan, Mission Operation Enduring Freedom
US Marine Corps

Gunnery Sgt Kenefick's Act of Heroism

My Son Fallen American Hero, Marine Gunnery Sgt Aaron Michael Kenefick, KIA on September 8th, 2009, Kunar Province Afghanistan. Aaron's specific act of heroism is as follows according to his Bronze Star Medal with V for Valor: Citation reads as follows:

For heroic service in connection with combat operations against the enemy while serving as an Staff Non-Commissioned Officer Advisor-Mentor, 1st Kandak, 2nd Brigade, 201st Corps, Afghan National Army, Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, on 8 September 2009. Gunnery Sergeant Kenefick was a member of a combined Marine and Afghan patrol that led the way into the Ganjgal Village to visit with village elders. As the patrol entered the village it was ambushed. Gunnery Sgt Aaron M Kenefick took cover near a retaining wall and returned fire. When the team leader directed his Marines and the Afghan soldiers to attack and seize the house from which they were receiving fire, Gunnery Sgt Kenefick boldly led the Afghan soldiers under fire and cleared the house. The enemy then attempted to encircle the team's position while subjecting the team to a hail of machine gun and rocket fire. Despite being pinned down, Gunnery Sergeant Kenefick returned fire and called in supporting artillery and mortar fire before falling mortally wounded. Gunnery Sgt Kenefick fought with bravery and determination while demonstrating unwavering courage in the face of the enemy. By his zealous initiative, courageous actions and exceptional dedication to duty, Gunnery Sergeant Kenefick reflected great credit upon himself and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.

My Hero

Why I consider my Son a True American Hero!!!

My Son(my first child, older brother to 2 sisters) was an AMAZING Man of 30 years old when he was KIA in Afghanistan. Gunnery Sgt Aaron Michael Kenefick, USMC, was already a stellar Marine as he had received Marine of the year twice within the first 10 of years years of service. Aaron also served as "Personal Attendee" to former President George W Bush at the Republican National Convention in Sarasota Fl also working at CENTCOM, Central Command, Tampa Fl from 2004-2007 as Aide to two Major Generals.

After completing his CENTCOM tour of duty in Fl, Aaron was transferred to Okinawa Japan in August of 2007, where he was assigned to Combat Assault Battalion, 3rd Expeditionary Force, Okinawa Japan as Battalion Chief. Aaron volunteered for a tour of duty to Afghanistan, where he was a member of Embedded Training Team 2-8. There were 21 Marines and Sailors given the extremely difficult mission of training,mentoring and advising an Afghan National Army Battalion in order to bring peace and stability to the people of Afghanistan. The specific mission Aaron had was that of a senior Enlisted Leader for a four-man Company Advisor Team. His patience, expertise and leadership were put to the test on a daily basis by the countless tasks he had to perform in order to make the Afghan National Army better. Aaron's efforts have helped make Afghanistan a safer place, the world a better place and helped secure the safety of every American here in the United States. Aaron was also known as the go to guy, the true friend that you went to when you had a problem. His ability to accomplish any task, no matter how complicated along with his loyalty and friendship were recognized and sought by all. His personality and sense of humor made the most difficult tasks bearable if not enjoyable. Aaron was the embodiment of Marine Corps Values, Honor, Courage and Committment, not only to the Corps but to God and His Family and Country.
Aaron would often tell us " I would rather die like a man, than live my life like a coward".
Aaron again was awarded Marine of the Year Twice in his 12 year Career, (twice within
the first 10 years of service) This tells you something about his passion and dedication and service. Aaron was our families hero long before he became a U.S.Marine, following in his Maternal Grandfathers footsteps.


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