Handshake after handshake and pat on the back for a job well done for Sgt Andrew Mahoney. This Fort Carson soldier was awarded the Silver Star on Monday. It is the third highest military honor for gallantry in action against an enemy of the United States.
A moment that Sgt Mahoney will never forget happened in August of 2012 in Afghanistan. He was on patrol with his unit. His job was security for the Brigade Commander and the Brigade Sgt Major. Sgt. Mahoney spotted a man inching closer to his group. The man was strapped with explosives, a human i.e.d. Major General Paul LaCamera picks up the story of Sgt Mahoney from there, , "Fearlessly and spontaneously rushing the bomber and knocking him to the ground outside the patrol's perimeter. He's selfless, humble and courageous and willing to give his life for his fellow soldiers." The bomb went off and badly injured Sgt. Mahoney.
Sgt Andrew Mahoney is humble about that experience that saved 24 lives, "It's my job to provide security and that's what I did. It's just another day in the life for me." His wife Melanie told me, "I'm just so proud of him. He's my hero even if he doesn't think so."
Sgt Mahoney's Mom, Lori told me, "I'm so proud of him. He is such a valiant young man. He's my baby." Andrew's Dad Jim put this proud day in perspective with a what if scenario that could have been tragic, "I'm so happy he's alive. It could have been much worse. We discussed it earlier today. We could have been attending something much worse. I'm just so proud of him."
Andrew Mahoney told me, he's career Army and will stay that way for decades ahead.