Camp Pendleton Marine Sgt. Matthew T. Abbate, a member of the Darkhorse battalion, will be posthumously awarded the Navy Cross for his heroism during battle.
The Marine Corps Times reports Abbate took command when his scout-sniper section was ambushed by the Taliban while patrolling what turned out to be a minefield on October 14, 2010.
Abbate's Navy Cross citation reads, in part:
“With total disregard for his own life, he sprinted forward through the minefield to draw enemy fire and rallied the dazed survivors. While fearlessly firing at the enemy from his exposed position, he directed fires of his Marines until they effectively suppressed the enemy, allowing life-saving aid to be rendered to the casualties.”
Abbate was killed in combat just six weeks later. He was 26-years-old.
According to Legacy.com, Abbate was deployed to both Iraq and Japan before his final tour of duty in Afghanistan.
Abbate left behind a wife, Stacie Rigall, and their son Carson Abbate.