By Stefan J. Bos, Special Correspondent Worthy News
(Worthy News) – A former U.S. Army medic who received the Medal of Honor in 2018 for his heroic efforts to save the lives of fellow soldiers in Afghanistan has died, his wife and officials confirmed. Staff Sgt. Ronald Shurer II was 41.
He passed away at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, DC, on Thursday, due to lung cancer, explained his wife, Miranda Shurer. He had been diagnosed in February 2017.
Shortly before he died, Shurer spoke on his Instagram website about being placed on a ventilator at Sibley Memorial Hospital.
“Very upset to write this…. been unconscious for a week. They are going to try and take it out in a couple of hours, they can't tell me if it will work," Shurer wrote. His words appeared alongside a photo of himself in a hospital bed with his wife.
Soon after he passed away, the U.S. Secret Service recalled him as an “American hero: Husband, Father, Son, Medal of Honor Recipient – Special Agent Ronald J. Shurer II.”
It added: “From a grateful Nation and Agency – your memory and legacy will live on forever. Rest In Peace.”
He was honored for assisting teammates when the team encountered machine gun and sniper fire and rocket-propelled grenades from Islamic militants.
The native of Fairbanks, Alaska, was awarded the Silver Star for his actions, but after review, military officials decided to upgrade it to a Medal of Honor.
Ronald Shurer II received the nation’s highest military honor from President Donald Trump in a formal White House ceremony attended by 250 people.
The Special Operations Task Force's mission Shurer participated in was to kill or capture the leader of the militant group, Gelbuddin Hekmatyar. But they came under fire as they made their way through the valley. Another part of the team also came under fire at a separate location, some of whom were critically injured.
"With disregard for his safety, Shurer moved quickly through a hail of bullets toward the base of the mountain to reach the pinned-down forward element,” The US Army said at the time.
"After providing aid, Shurer spent the next hour fighting across several hundred meters and killing multiple insurgents. Eventually, Shurer arrived to support the pinned down element and immediately rendered aid to four critically wounded U.S. units and ten injured commandos until teammates arrived."
The Army said Shurer saved the lives of all the teammates he treated despite being shot in the arm. He also assisted evacuating three teammates who couldn't walk down a near-vertical 60-foot cliff while taking fire.
Shurer was honorably discharged in May 2009 and became a special agent at the United States Secret Service, where he was praised for his work.
In addition to his wife, Shurer is survived by his sons, Cameron and Tyler.
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