The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the NAVY CROSS to Hospitalman Apprentice LUIS E. FONSECA, JR. for extraordinary heroism as Corpsman, Amphibious Assault Vehicle Platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, Task Force TARAWA, 1 Marine Expeditionary Force in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM on 23 March 2003. During Company C’s assault and seizure of the Saddam Canal Bridge, five casualties resulted when an amphibious assault vehicle was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade. Without concern for his own safety, Hospitalman Apprentice Fonseca braved small arms, machine gun, and intense rocket-propelled grenade fire to evacuate the wounded Marines from the burning amphibious assault vehicle. Establishing a casualty collection point inside the unit’s medical evacuation amphibious assault vehicle, he calmly and methodically stabilized two causualties with lower limb amputations by applying tourniquets and administering morphine. Hospitalman Apprentice Fonseca continued to treat and care for the wounded until his vehicle was rendered immoble by enemy fire. Under a wall of enemy machine gun fire, he directed the movement of four casualties from the damaged vehicle by organizing litter teams from available Marines. He personally carried one critically wounded Marine over open ground to another vehicle. Following a deadly artillery barrage, he again exposed himself to enemy fire to treat wounded Marines along the perimeter. His timely and effective care undoubtedly saved the lives of numerous casualties. By his outstanding display of decisive leadership, unlimited courage in the face of heavy enemy fire, and utmost devotion to duty, Hospitalman Apprentice Fonseca reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.
Mr. Fonseca joined the Legion of Valor in 2006 as a LIFE MEMBER and resides in North Carolina.