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Dead soldier to receive Medal of Honor

April 17, 2012 at 9:43 PM

WASHINGTON, April 17 (UPI) -- A U.S. Army soldier will be awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously for his heroics in the Vietnam War, the White House announced.

U.S. Army Spc. 4 Leslie Sabo Jr., a rifleman with the 101st Airborne Division, is credited with saving the lives of several fellow soldiers in Company B, 3rd Battalion, 506th infantry when they were ambushed by a larger enemy force in eastern Cambodia on May 10, 1970.

Sabo charged the enemy soldiers, killing several of them before attacking a flanking unit that was forced to retreat.

While the platoon was reloading, an enemy grenade landed nearby. Sabo picked it up and threw it, shielding a wounded comrade. He absorbed most of the blast, saving the other soldier's life.

Though wounded, Sabo charged an enemy bunker, sustaining multiple serious wounds from automatic weapons fire. He got close enough to take out the bunker with a grenade but the resulting blast killed him as well.

Sabo's unit nominated him for the Medal of Honor but the paperwork was lost until Vietnam veteran Tony Mabb came across Sabo's file while doing research at the National Archives military repository in College Park, Md.

Mabb contacted his congresswoman, who recommended Sabo receive the Medal of Honor.

The White House extended an invitation Monday to Sabo's widow, Rose Mary Sabo-Brown of New Castle, Pa., and his brother George for the May 16 ceremony.

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