As mentioned on this blog yesterday, this week’s Marine Corps Times cover story focuses on Lance Cpl. Kyle Carpenter, the Marine infantryman who has achieved a miraculous recovery after sustaining a grenade blast near Marjah, Afghanistan, in November 2010.
Marine Corps Times has taken some heat for reporting that there are questions over whether Carpenter covered the grenade to protect his buddy, Lance Cpl. Nick Eufrazio. Actions along those lines have yielded prestigious valor awards in the past, obviously.
Those questions exist, though, at least in the minds of some in the Corps. Additional Marine sources have reaffirmed that since the story was published yesterday. Both lance corporals are heroes nevertheless, but Marine officials acknowledge they are uncertain what happened and still investigating.
That doesn’t take away from Carpenter’s sacrifice, though — or the inspiring way he carries himself now. I sat down with him at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for the story, and was blown away by his optimism and grace. When you see this video, I think you will be, too.
We’ll have another story about this incident in next week’s paper featuring comments from other Marines who were in the compound when the grenade exploded. This story isn’t going away anytime soon.