HOLLAND, Mich.,--A West Michigan community coming together to honor their hometown hero, Gunnery Sgt. Daniel Price, a Holland native who was killed in Afghanistan on July 29, 2012.
Tuesday, two years after his death his family was awarded a silver star on his behalf. It’s the third highest military honor.
It was a day filled not with grief but celebration for a Marine who showed what true bravery and courage are.
“I know the one thing he did love was his hometown. He talked about it all the time. He lived for all of you and he died for all of us. He was a guy who made this country better and you people drove him to do that,” said one fellow Marine who served alongside Price.
From those who knew him to those who never met him, more than a hundred people filled the Central Wesleyan Church in Holland to be there for the ceremony.
“I’ve been on the battlefield with him and I’ve seen him do it multiple times and there’s a couple guys in this room who wouldn’t be here right now, myself included, if it wasn’t for Dan.”
During the ceremony they shared the heroic actions Gunnery Sgt. Price took. In special operations he was supporting Afghan commandoes to secure an insurgent strong hold village when they came upon heavy fire and several became wounded.
Sgt. Price volunteered to help get them treated as they crossed exposed ground, but as more casualties came he realized the mission was in jeopardy and took initiative.
“Gunnery Price scaled the compound wall and dropped a grenade down the chimney to destroy insurgents inside still firing on commandoes.”
He ultimately lost his life but his actions proved to be decisive in breaking the insurgent defense and allowing commandoes to secure the village, a sacrifice that will never be forgotten.
“You can see the patriotism he was raised with and he fought with and values he was raised with back here from his family. He set the standard and everything Dan did he did it 100 percent,” said Master Gunnery Sgt. Jack Kelly.
This isn’t the first honor either for Gunner Sgt. Price. He also was awarded the Bronze star, two combat action ribbons, three Good Conduct Medals and two Purple Hearts.