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article imageVideo: Heroic Army medics pull live grenade out of marine's leg

By JohnThomas Didymus     Jun 2, 2012 in World
A U.S. Army Corporal Winder Perez, 22, was injured in Afghanistan. A live rocket-propelled grenade lodged in his leg. In spite of the danger, Navy Nurse Lieutenant Commander James Gennari and Army Staff Sergeant Ben Summerfield pulled out the grenade.
According to Daily Mail, Corporal Perez was wounded in action and transported in a Black Hawk helicopter from the field to a makeshift operating room. The men who flew the Black Hawk were Capt. Kevin Doo, Spc. Mark Edens and Sgt. Robert Hardisty.
Fox News reports that the 22-year-old Marine Cpl. Winder Perez had a UXO in him. The term "UXO" means "unexploded ordnance." The "UXO" in this case was a 14-inch warhead from a rocket-propelled grenade lodged in the left thigh and abdomen of the soldier.
Captain Kevin Doo who piloted the Black Hawk that evacuated the wounded soldier, said: "Because there was a (live) warhead on board, special precautions had to be made. Not only did we know we had to make a soft landing, we had to fly at whatever air speed caused the least amount of vibration. We had to alert the other crews, the tower, the airfield and the hospital that we didn't want anyone rushing toward the aircraft because if anything happened, everyone would be taken out."
The helicopter landed safely. Lieutenant Commander Gennari, an Army Nurse, and Army Staff Sergeant Ben Summerfield, an explosives expert, met Perez while wearing body armor.
Daily Mail reports Gennari dosed the wounded soldier with pain killers. Sergeant Summerfield tugged at the grenade three times before he pulled it out.
It was a dangerous procedure. The grenade could explode in their faces.
Gennari told CNN: "I said a prayer, and I thanked God for everything I had. Whether or not the grenade was gonna blow up, I left it to Him, and I just worried about keeping Lance Corporal [Perez's] airway open."
He added: "I think the reason that I did it [was that] I knew that I'm sent out there by the Marine Corps to save lives, and he was in danger, and I looked at it as my duty and job to go do that."
Fox News reports the crew of the Black Hawk were awarded Army Commendation Medals for valor as a result of that mission.
Corporal Perez survived the incident.
More about eutenant Commander James Gennari, Corporal Perez, Afghanistan
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