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Project Hero: PO2 (SEAL) Marc A. Lee, Silver Star
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, June 23, 2007

Today we honor the 1st Navy SEAL to fall in battle in Iraq, Petty Officer Marc A. Lee of SEAL Team 3, who was awarded the Silver Star posthumously for valor in combat in Ramadi Iraq on August 2, 2006:
Lee and other teammates were supporting an Iraqi Army unit during military operations with Army forces in Ramadi, the provincial capital of Anbar province in western Iraq that has seen regular attacks by insurgents.

According to the award citation, provided to Navy Times by Geisen, Lee was conducting clearance operations in south-central Ramadi with members of a Naval Special Warfare Combat Advisory element.

“During the operation, one element member was wounded by enemy fire. The element completed the casualty evacuation, regrouped and returned onto the battlefield to continue the fight,” the citation reads. “Petty Officer Lee and his SEAL element maneuvered to assault an unidentified enemy position. He, his teammates, Bradley Fighting Vehicles and Abrams tanks engaged enemy positions with suppressive fire from an adjacent building to the north.

“To protect the lives of his teammates, he fearlessly exposed himself to direct enemy fire by engaging the enemy with his machine gun and was mortally wounded in the engagement. His brave actions in the line of fire saved the lives of many of his teammates,” it states.
Lee risked and lost his life in an effort to save his comrades who were wounded and under fire. SEALs have a storied history and are among the best warriors the US military has to offer. "Elite" is not an empty word when applied to them. And the bond these warriors have within their teams drives the sort of risk taking for each other that is evident in this action.
“It was so like Marc to give up his life to save his friends,” his mother, Debbie Lee, told the Hood River News. “I am so proud of him. He is my hero.”


Navy officers told Debbie Lee that her son died after single-handedly holding off enemy fighters as his team rescued a wounded soldier from a rooftop.

SEALs rely on each other like brothers, so it is no surprise that Lee gave his life saving his brothers, said Rep. Greg Walden, who represents Hood River, where Lee grew up, and was one of about a dozen speakers.
While Lee was the first SEAL killed in combat in Iraq, SEALs have lost 16 in Afghanistan including 8 killed in a single rescue mission.


Previously featured in "Project Hero":

1LT Brian Chontosh: Navy Cross
PFC Daniel McClenney: Silver Star
PVT Dwayne Turner: Silver Star
MSG Robert Collins & SFC Danny Hall: Silver Star
SSG William Thomas Payne: Silver Star
CPT Christoper J. Bronzi: Silver Star
SSG Charles Good: Silver Star
SR AMN Jason D. Cunningham: Air Force Cross
PFC Jeremy Church: Silver Star
SGT Leigh Ann Hester: Silver Star
CSM Ron Riling: Silver Star
CPL Jason L. Dunham: Medal of Honor
PFC Joseph Perez: Navy Cross
COL James Coffman, Jr: Distinguished Service Cross
1LT Karl Gregory: Silver Star
1LT Brian Stann: Silver Star
MSG Anthony Pryor: Silver Star
TSGT John Chapman: Air Force Cross
MSG Sarun Sar: Silver Star
1LT Jeffery Lee: Silver Star
SGT James Witkowski: Silver Star
SGT Timothy Connors: Silver Star
PO2 Juan Rubio: Silver Star
SFC David Lowe: Silver Star
SGT Leandro Baptista: Silver Star
SPC Gerrit Kobes: Silver Star
SSG Anthony Viggiani: Navy Cross
LCPL Carlos Gomez-Perez: Silver Star
MSG Donald R. Hollenbaugh: Distinguished Service Cross
SGT Jarred L. Adams: Silver Star
1LT Thomas E Cogan: Silver Star
MAJ Mark E. Mitchell: Distinguished Service Cross
CPL Robert Mitchell Jr: Navy Cross
SGT David Neil Wimberg: Silver Star
CWO3 Christopher Palumbo: Silver Star
SGT Tommy Rieman: Silver Star
SCPO Britt Slabinski: Navy Cross
LT David Halderman: FDNY - 9/11/01
1LT Stephen Boada: Silver Star
1LT Neil Prakash: Silver Star
SFC Gerald Wolford: Silver Star
SSG Matthew Zedwick: Silver Star
LCPL Christopher Adlesperger: Navy Cross
SGT Joshua Szott: Silver Star
SPC Richard Ghent: Silver Star
CPL Mark Camp: Silver Star
The Veteran
CW3 Lori Hill: Distinguished Flying Cross
SGT Paul R. Smith: Medal of Honor
PFC Ross A. McGinnis: Silver Star
SGT Joseph E. Proctor: Silver Star
PFC Christopher Fernandez: Silver Star
MAJ James Gant: Silver Star
1SG John E. Mangels: Silver Star
Staff Sgt Michael Shropshire: Silver Star
Staff Sgt Stephen Achey: Silver Star
SFC Frederick Allen: Silver Star


PROJECT HERO is an ongoing attempt to highlight the valor of our military as they fight in both Iraq and Afghanistan. We constantly hear the negative and far to little of the positive and inspiring stories coming out of those countries. This is one small attempt to rectify that. If you know of a story of valor you'd like to see highlighted here (published on Saturday), please contact us. And we'd appreciate your link so we can spread the word.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

While I don’t want to pick nits on this very worthwhile series, you should be aware that Navy PO’s have a rating and a rank. In Marc Lee’s case, he was an Aircraft Ordnanceman 2nd Class. Ordnance was his professional specialty (after being a Seal, I guess), and the "2nd class" puts him at the same paygrade as an Army buck sergeant.

Written By: Rich
URL: http://
Marc’s efforts to save his Seal brother’s lives was successful that day, and as his Mother, I am so very proud of him. I have been blessed to have 21 newly adopted sons who have given me amazing love and support along with others in the Seal Community. I miss Marc deeply but I know he is just on advanced deployment to meet me at Heaven’s gate when God sends me my orders. Until that time I will carry on in the tradition of the Navy Seals and wear the Trident proudly. Just a correction Marc was on Seal Team 3.
Written By: Debbie
URL: http://
Debbie, correction made, thanks.

God bless you and your son. It was our honor to be able to honor him and his valor (and your sacrifice).
Written By: McQ
Thank you for honoring Marc and all of the other men and women who sacrificed their lives so that we can live in freedom!
Written By: Debbie
URL: http://

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