When then-Pfc. Adlesperger and his squad approached a house on Nov. 10, 2004, in the treacherous city of Fallujah, they entered into one of the most difficult and dangerous battlefield situations: they faced an entrenched enemy in an urban setting – with an entrenched machine gun.
As they entered the house, a volley of insurgent fire and grenades rained down upon them, immediately killing Adlesperger’s point man and injuring two others. Without pause, Adlesperger took control and moved out front, despite receiving minor wounds. As Adlesperger began firing back from the point position, he became the main target of enemy fire – but, with most of his squad pinned down by insurgent fire, he had no choice but to push forward on his own.
Adlesperger single-handedly cleared the stairs to the rooftop, which allowed the unit to move injured Marines upstairs to receive medical attention. And as U.S. forces gathered for a major assault on the building, Adlesperger, still inside, began moving from one spot to another, eliminating enemies in close quarters or forcing them to move out of entrenched positions to areas where U.S. forces were waiting.
Finally, an assault vehicle broke through a wall on the main floor. Adlesperger rejoined his platoon and demanded to take point for the final attack on the entrenched machine gun. He entered the courtyard first, and eliminated the final enemy at close range. By the end of the battle, Adlesperger was credited with having killed at least 11 insurgents.
One month later, Adlesperger was killed while clearing other houses in Fallujah. For his actions on Nov. 10, 2004, Adlesperger will be posthumously awarded the Navy Cross on April 13, 2007. (Information from DOD)
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