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OC Marine gets Silver Star

March 30, 2008 |  8:53 am

Moses_cardens_left_got_a_silver_staOn a hot and dry August morning in 2007, Moses Cardenas, a lance corporal in the Marines, ran through gunfire across flat and open terrain to try to save Sgt. Randy Roedema, who lay on the ground, shot and bleeding. Tony Perry tells the story:

Wounded twice in the neck, Cardenas was knocked to the ground, but he refused to retreat. He reached Roedema, who was bleeding profusely, unable to move.

Cardenas dragged him an estimated 100 yards to safety, stopping several times to fire his machine gun at the hidden enemy while using his body to shield his colleague. Once in a safe location, he ignored his own wounds and gave first aid to Roedema.

"He was my sergeant; I had to do something," Cardenas said.

He saved his sergeant's life. On Friday, in an emotional ceremony, Cardenas was given the Silver Star.  (That's Cardenas, 20, who grew up in Fullerton, on the left. Roedema, 25, is on the right.) Perry's full story here.

-- Veronique de Turenne

Photo: Tony Perry / Los Angeles Times