Gunnery Sergeant Javier Obleas, USMC
Bronze Star (Awarded Posthumously) — For Actions During the Global War on Terror
For heroic achievement in connection with combat operations against the enemy as Platoon Sergeant, 2d Platoon, Company A, 2d Reconnaissance Battalion, 2d Brigade Combat Team, 1st Marine Division in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II from 1 September to 1 December 2004. Gunnery Sergeant Obleas’ gallant leadership was instrumental during the conduct of 22 combat patrols that located and destroyed more than 10,506 pieces of enemy ordnance. On 13 November, his platoon was attacked by an improvised explosive device that claimed the lives of two Marines and injured four others. His calm and resolute leadership in the midst of the chaotic situation was critical as he maneuvered the platoon to establish a security cordon and directed the recovery and evacuation of the unit’s casualties. On 14 November, an isolated sniper team came under direct fire attack by 15-20 insurgents. Leading a four-man element across 300 meters of exposed terrain under enemy fire to recover the team, he established a support by fire position and directed devastating fire on the enemy allowing the engaged team to safely extract. On 25 November, an improvised explosive device destroyed Gunnery Sergeant Obleas’ vehicle. Though mortally wounded, he continued to direct Marines to establish security positions and refused medical treatment until all other casualties had received aid. In each engagement, his undaunting leadership and selfless dedication saved lives and directly led to the success of his unit. By his zealous initiative, courageous actions and exceptional dedication to duty Gunnery Sergeant Obleas reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.