Lake Jackson soldier makes history

HOUSTON Her efforts to save wounded soldiers during a firefight in Afghanistan led her to become only the second woman since World War II to receive the silver star.

"That's the way we Browns raised our girls, to be strong, independent."

Katy Brown says her grandaughter, Specialist Monica Brown, is a tough young woman. The 19-year-old combat medic and her older brother both joined the Army the same day in November 2006. In april of last year, Monica Brown was riding in a convoy in Afghanistan when a Humvee hit a roadside bomb.

"And without regard for her personal safety, moved to the burning vehicle amid intense enemy fire," an Army official announced during the award ceremony at Bagram Air Base in Afhganistan.

Brown placed herself between gun and mortar fire to five wounded soldiers and gave them first aid. "PFC Brown used her body to shield the casualites from enemy fire," the official said.

As enemy fighters attacked the soldiers and ammuntion exploded in the burning Humvee, the young soldier helped drag the wounded troops 1,500 feet to safety.

"She doesn't realize that as being a hero, she sees it as doing her job. She didn't do it to be a hero, she did it because that's just her," Katy Brown said.

Monica Brown's grandmother told Eyewitness News she's not surprised by her granddaughter's actions.

"She did no less than what we expected," Katy Brown said.

The Army obviously agrees with that assessment.

"Specialist Brown's heroism and selfless devotion to duty reflect great credit upon herself, and the United States Army."

"America needs a hero right now, we really do," Katy Brown said.

And finally, Specialist Brown has re-enlisted and plans to go to college so she can become an Army officer.

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