The President of the United States of America,
authorized by Act of Congress, March 3, 1863, has awarded in the
name of Congress the Medal of Honor to Private First Class Ross
United States Army
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his
life above and beyond the call of duty:
Private First Class Ross A. McGinnis distinguished himself by
acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of
duty while serving as an M2 .50-caliber Machine Gunner, 1st
Platoon, C Company, 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, in
connection with combat operations against an armed enemy in
Adhamiyah, Northeast Baghdad, Iraq, on 4 December 2006.
That afternoon his platoon was conducting combat
operations in an effort to reduce and control
sectarian violence in the area. While Private McGinnis was
manning the M2 .50-caliber Machine Gun, a fragmentation grenade
thrown by an insurgent fell through the gunner's hatch into the
vehicle. Reacting quickly, he yelled "grenade," allowing all
four members of his crew to prepare for the grenade's blast.
Then, rather than leaping from the gunner's hatch to safety,
Private McGinnis made the courageous decision to protect his
crew. In a selfless act of bravery, in which he was mortally
wounded, Private McGinnis covered the live grenade, pinning it
between his body and the vehicle and absorbing most of the
Private McGinnis' gallant action directly saved four men from
certain serious injury or death. Private First Class McGinnis'
extraordinary heroism and selflessness at the cost of his own life,
above and beyond the call of duty, are in keeping with the highest
traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon
himself, his unit, and the United States Army.