Paul Ray Smith, SFC

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Paul Ray Smith, SFC

Birthdate: (33)
Birthplace: El Paso, TX, USA
Death: April 4, 2003 (33)
Baghdad International Airport, Baghdad, Iraq (KIA)
Occupation: Army
Managed by: Shirley Marie Caulk
Last Updated:

About Paul Ray Smith, SFC

Sergeant First Class Paul Ray Smith

Sgt. 1st Class Paul Ray Smith will receive the Medal of Honor posthumously during a White House ceremony April 4, 2005.

Hometown: Tampa, Florida

Enlisted: October 1989 Completed Basic and Advanced Individual Training at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO

Assignments: 82nd Engineer Battalion (Bamberg, Germany), 1st Engineer Battalion (Fort Riley, Kansas), 317th Engineer Battalion (Fort Benning, Georgia), 9th Engineer Battalion (Schweinfurt, Germany), 11th Engineer Battalion (Fort Stewart, Georgia)

Deployments: Persian Gulf War, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, and Operation Iraqi Freedom


:#Medal of Honor

  1. Bronze Star
  2. Purple Heart
  3. Army Commendation Medal (4 Oak Leaf Cluster)
  4. Army Achievement Medal (5 Oak Leaf Cluster)
  5. Good Conduct Medal (3d award)
  6. National Defense Service Medal
  7. Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
  8. South West Asia Service Medal (3 bronze stars)
  9. Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
  10. Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
  11. Army NCO Professional Development Ribbon (2d award)
  12. Army Service Ribbon
  13. Overseas Service Ribbon (3d award)
  14. NATO Medal (Kosovo)
  15. Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)
  16. Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait)
  17. Valorous Unit Award
  18. Army Superior Unit Award
  19. German Marksmanship Badge
  20. French Armed Forces Commando Badge

Medal Of Honor

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, April 4, 2005, has awarded in the name of Congress the Medal of Honor to

Sergeant First Class Paul R. Smith United States Army

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty:

Sergeant First Class Paul R. Smith distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action with an armed enemy near Baghdad International Airport, Baghdad, Iraq on 4 April 2003. On that day, Sergeant First Class Smith was engaged in the construction of a prisoner of war holding area when his Task Force was violently attacked by a company-sized enemy force. Realizing the vulnerability of over 100 fellow soldiers, Sergeant First Class Smith quickly organized a hasty defense consisting of two platoons of soldiers, one Bradley Fighting Vehicle and three armored personnel carriers. As the fight developed, Sergeant First Class Smith braved hostile enemy fire to personally engage the enemy with hand grenades and anti-tank weapons, and organized the evacuation of three wounded soldiers from an armored personnel carrier struck by a rocket propelled grenade and a 60mm mortar round. Fearing the enemy would overrun their defenses, Sergeant First Class Smith moved under withering enemy fire to man a .50 caliber machine gun mounted on a damaged armored personnel carrier. In total disregard for his own life, he maintained his exposed position in order to engage the attacking enemy force. During this action, he was mortally wounded. His courageous actions helped defeat the enemy attack, and resulted in as many as 50 enemy soldiers killed, while allowing the safe withdrawal of numerous wounded soldiers. Sergeant First Class Smith's extraordinary heroism and uncommon valor are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, the Third Infantry Division "Rock of the Marne," and the United States Army.

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Paul Ray Smith, SFC's Timeline

September 24, 1969
El Paso, TX, USA
April 4, 2003
Age 33
Baghdad International Airport, Baghdad, Iraq