Rich Galen

In September, at Walter Reed, in the presence of 50 of his Marine Corps buddies, Corporal Todd Nicely was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, with a V device for valor. It wasn't for getting blown up. It was, according to the article, "for his meritorious work in the weeks before the explosion."

When it was his turn to speak, Marine Corps Corporal Todd A. Nicely, 26 years old, a squad leader, and a quadruple amputee said:

"I just want to thank everybody. I'd like to . . . thank my platoon for getting me back. If it wasn't for you guys, I don't think I'd be alive today. Other than that, I really don't have much more to say."

Then, according to the wonderful prose produced by Michael Ruane, "He rubbed his nose with his flesh-colored left hand, shifted his weight on his legs and added, 'I love you guys.'"

Me, too.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at