Army Specialist Shane Pugh was from Stonewall, MS, just outside of Meridian. As the oldest of five children, Shane grew up with a heart to serve people. His passion for helping people expressed itself first as a volunteer firefighter. He was also a licensed paramedic/phlebotomist who worked for United Blood Services in Meridian. His co-workers there recognized Shane as the most upbeat member of their team, always looking for ways to improve their services and make things more comfortable for their patients. Shane's heart was always focused on other people's needs.
He took it one step further when he joined the National Guard as a medic in 1999. Six years later, Shane's unit - the Mississippi National Guard's 155th Infantry - would be deployed to Iraq. Nearly 3,500 Mississippians made the journey to Iskandariyah, a region just outside of Baghdad.
On March 2, 2005, Spec. Shane Pugh and Sgt. Ellis Martin were on foot patrol, something they had done numerous times before. As they began to secure an area near a vehicle, an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) detonated, badly wounding both Spec. Pugh and Sgt. Martin. Lying in the dust, Spec. Pugh realized that Sgt. Martin needed medical attention quickly. As a medic, he knew it was his responsibility.
Read the rest of Specialist Shane Pugh's story at www.40daysofhonor.com"