An Elida High School graduate was recently awarded two commendations from the U.S. Army for his actions while serving in Iraq.
Army Reserve Staff Sgt. Robert S. Turner of Albuquerque was awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Army Combat Action Badge, according to an Army press release.
Turner is serving with the 1179th Deployment Support Brigade, Logistics Support Area Anaconda in Balad, Iraq.
While in Iraq, Turner also served as the supervisor of the 840th Deployment Distribution Support Team. He played a valuable role in the redeployment of nine brigade combat teams and several other units from various locations throughout Iraq, according to the release.
He planned and implemented training exercises to test a team’s force protection capabilities and ensure that a team could safely conduct its mission in combat environments, according to the release.
“He was very gung-ho about receiving the awards,” said Turner’s mother, Darlene Turner of Portales. “I am proud of and excited for Robert. He has worked so hard for this and deserves it.
“He has always wanted to be a solider. It is the most important thing in his life.”
Turner entered the Army in 1987 following his graduation from Elida. He served for eight years before joining the Army Reserve.
To receive the Bronze Star Medal, an individual must perform a heroic act, meritorious achievement or distinguished service during armed conflict or ground combat while engaged against an armed enemy of the United States.
The Combat Action Badge provides special recognition to soldiers who engage the enemy, or are engaged by the enemy during combat operations.