Medal Of Honor Recipient Talks New Book, ‘8 Seconds Of Courage’

Medal Of Honor Recipient Talks New Book, ‘8 Seconds Of Courage’


NEXT FRIDAY 54 WITH A MIX OF SUNSHINE AND CLOUDS. IT IS NOW TIME TO SEND IT OVER TO ANDREW WITH A VERY SPECIAL GUEST. THANK YOU. TODAY IS VETERANS DAY, A DAY WE HONOR THE MEN AND WOMEN WHO SERVE TO PROTECT OUR COUNTRY, AND THAT INCLUDES CAPTAIN FLOW GROBERG WHO CAME TO OUR COUNTRY AS AN IMMIGRANT, WENT ON TO JOIN THE U.S. ARMY AND RECEIVE THE CONGRESSIONAL MEDAL OF HONOR. HE’S HERE IN STUDIO TO TALK ABOUT HIS NEW BOOK 8 SECONDS OF COURAGE PUBLISHED BY SIMON & SCHUSTER. WHAT AN HONOR TO TALK TO YOU. THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE. THANK YOU FOR HAVING ME. YOU WERE BORN IN FRANCE. I WAS. CAME OVER TO THE U.S. WHEN YOU WERE A CHILD RIGHT? CORRECT. WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO JOIN THE ARMY? SO MY UNCLE WHO IS AN ALGERIAN, LATE 80s, EARLY 90s HE WAS — OF THE MUSLIM FAITH IN NIGERIA AND AN ORGANIZATION CAME INTO NIGERIA TO TRY AND TAKE OVER THE GOVERNMENT LIKE ISIS DID IN SYRIA AND IRAQ. THESE ARE YOUR PARENTS WE’RE LOOKING AT NOW, CONTINUE. THAT’S NOT MY PARENTS. THAT’S THE PRESIDENT AND YOUR FIANCEE. AND SO HE FOUGHT AND HE WAS KILLED IN 1996. HE WAS SHOT. HE WAS BEHEADED AND HE WAS DISMEMBERED, SO WHEN WE MOVED TO THE UNITED STATES THAT WAS A BIG — YOU KNOW, A PERSONAL PROBLEM, AND A SITUATION FOR ME, AND THEN 9/11 HAPPENED. I HAD JUST BEEN NATURALIZED AS A U.S. CITIZEN. I WAS ADOPTED BY MY DAD FROM GARY, INDIANA, AND I HAD NO OTHER CHOICE BUT TO PUT ON THE UNIFORM AND SERVE MY COUNTRY AND EARN THE RIGHT TO CALL MYSELF AN AMERICAN. IN AUGUST OF 2012, YOU WERE ON YOUR SECOND TOUR, YOUR SECOND DEPLOYMENT TO AFGHANISTAN, AND YOUR JOB WAS TO YOU SAID IT WAS KIND OF LIKE THE SECRET SERVICE. YOU WERE IN CHARGE OF PROTECTING THE MILITARY VIPs. THE 8 SECONDS, WHICH IS THE TITLE OF YOUR BOOK WAS THE AMOUNT OF TIME IT TOOK YOU TO RUN AT AND PUSH AWAY A SUICIDE BOMBER. TAKE US BACK TO THAT DAY AND WHAT HAPPENED? WE WERE RUNNING A PERSONALIZED SECURITY DETAIL AT THE TIME AND WE WERE GOING TO A SECURITY MEETING. IT HAPPENED EVERY WEEK, EVERY WEDNESDAY. THE ENEMY DECIDED TO TARGET US WITH TWO SUICIDE VERSIONS. TWO MOTORCYCLES IN FRONT OF OUR PATROL AS WE WERE WALKING TOWARDS THE COMPOUND. AT THE SAME TIME A MAN CAME OUT OF A STRUCTURE TO OUR LEFT. AT THAT POINT WHEN I SAW HIM, IDENTIFIED HIM, I COULDN’T SEE A WEAPON ON HIM SO I COULDN’T ENGAGE HIM WITH MY WEAPON, SO THE NEXT COURSE OF ACTION, I RAN AT HIM, GRABBED HIM, HIT HIM. YOU RAN AT HIM? YEAH. HE HAD A SUICIDE — HE HAD A VEST ON. WELL, HE’S A THREAT. YEAH,. HE’S A THREAT. YOU NEVER KNOW EXACTLY WHAT THE THREAT IS UNTIL YOU GET THAT CLOSE TO HIM. SO WHEN I WAS HOLDING HIM, I REALIZED THIS WAS DEFINITELY IT IN REGARDS TO A SUICIDE VEST SO I JUST DID MY JOB. I TRIED TO THROW HIM AS FAR AWAY AS POSSIBLE AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE BECAUSE YOU’VE GOT TO PROTECT THE BOSS BUT WE STILL LOST FOUR. YOU LOST FOUR LIVES. WE HAVE PICTURES OF THE FOUR. THIS IS WHAT YOU RECEIVED THE MEDAL OF HONOR FOR. TELL US ABOUT THESE FOUR MEN WHO WE’RE SEEING RIGHT HERE. YOU HAVE MAJOR KENNEDY. HE’S A NATIVE OF NEW YORK. WE HAVE SERGEANT GRIFFIN, WE HAVE MAJOR GRAY WHO WAS AIR FORCE, AND THEN WE HAVE DELFATA WHO WAS STATE DEPARTMENT. YOU TALK ABOUT FOUR INCREDIBLE AMERICANS RIGHT THERE. FAMILY MAN, COMMUNITY MAN, WELL RESPECTED IN THEIR PROFESSIONS, WILLING TO SACRIFICE EVERYTHING FOR THE WELL BEING OF OUR NATION AND TO PROTECT OUR FLAG AND FAMILIES AND OUR WAY OF LIFE. THEY DID IT ON AUGUST 82,012th, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE THIS WEIRD THING THAT IT’S NOT WEIRD BUT WHEN A PERSON DOESN’T MAKE IT IN COMBAT, IT’S A HERO CALL. THAT’S SO FITTING IN REGARDS TO WHY WE CALL OUR FALLEN COMRADES FALLEN PATRIOTS, YOU KNOW, HEROES. IF WE DO IT OUT THERE OVERSEAS WHEN ONE OF US DOESN’T COME HOME, IT’S CALLED A HERO CALL AND MAYBE IT’S THE RIGHT NAME FOR IT. AND YOU RECEIVED THE MEDAL OF HONOR. WHAT WAS THAT LIKE? I’LL BE HONEST WITH YOU, WHEN I RECEIVED THE MEDAL IT WAS UNCOMFORTABLE. I ALMOST FELT SHAME BECAUSE YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT THE WORST DAY OF MY LIFE WHERE FOUR GREAT AMERICANS DIDN’T COME HOME. BUT YOU SAVED A LOT OF OTHER LIVES. IT’S TRUE, BUT YOU KNOW, I THINK IN OUR PROFESSION IT’S ABOUT BEING PERFECT AND EVEN WHEN YOU’RE PERFECT BAD THINGS CAN HAPPEN, AND SO I STRUGGLED WITH THAT FACT FOR A LONG TIME IN REGARD TO MY FRIENDS NOT COMING HOME AND I LIVING. A GUY BLEW UP AT MY FEET AND I LIVED AND THEY WERE ALMOST 20, 30 FEET AWAY AND THEY DIDN’T MAKE IT, BUT IT WAS AN HONOR TO RECEIVE IT. AND JUST LASTLY, WHAT DO YOU WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW HERE ON VETERANS DAY ABOUT THE MEN AND WOMEN WHO SERVED IN OUR MILITARY? THAT WE LOVE THIS COUNTRY. WE SHOULD BE REALLY — WE SHOULD TAKE A MOMENT TO STEP AWAY AND REALIZE, LIKE WHY THIS COUNTRY IS THE MOST IMPORTANT COUNTRY IN THE WORLD, THE BEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD BECAUSE WE HAVE THE BEST PEOPLE AND YOU HAVE INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE WILLING TO SACRIFICE ALL FOR OUR WELL BEING AND EVERYTHING THAT WE REPRESENT. THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE. SUCH AN HONOR TO SPEAK WITH YOU, AND THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE TO OUR COUNTRY. HAPPY VETERANS DAY. HAPPY VETERANS DAY.

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