Giunta’s wife of 1 year, 10 days was by his side during the induction ceremony, as were his family and fellow soldiers from his platoon in Afghanistan, where his “conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty” earned him the medal.
The family of the soldiers in his unit who were killed during his tour were there, too.
It was to them – and to all of the families of all troops who have lost their lives throughout the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – that Giunta spoke on Wednesday.
The ceremony, he said, was bittersweet. “We lost our sons, our brothers,” he said. “I haven’t given anything compared to those who have given everything.”
To all those who have been lost and to their families, he said, “Thank you.”
SSgt Giunta, the recipient of the highest military award one can receive, stated in an interview with 60 Minutes that he was just “an average soldier.” He truly exemplifies what today’s volunteer service member is all about, “service above self.”
And so it comes as no surprise the SSgt would not make any mention that his family was assigned the third row for the award ceremony while U.S. Senators and the DC elite took the first two rows.
At least that is what one source is reporting. See it here.
Actual footage does show that SSgt Giunta’s parents have two seats in the front and it could very well be that his extended family were assigned the third row.
The bottom line: SSgt Giunta is an exemplary soldier and his family deserved the best seats during the ceremony. Let’s just hope this administration thought as he did, “service above self” and stacked the first two rows with Giunta’s family.