I became an honorary member of Poland's army yesterday. A few of us from my unit were given the Star of Afghanistan bearing the seal of the President of the Republic of Poland. The President had visited FOB Ghazni in December following the tragic deaths of six soldiers in two days, and some of the members of the Polish medical team had recommended the award in appreciation for our help during that time.
I hope you will not think me unpatriotic if I say that this is the most meaningful award I have recieved on my deployment. From my perpsective, it means a lot because it is tied to an event that is important to me personally. When I saw the bodies of those Polish soldiers, I felt that they were my brothers as much as any U.S. soldier was- they had given their lives for the safety of all of us on the base.
There are countless awards, certificates of appreciation, and commander's coins given to you in the military, and very few of them hold any personal significance to you. This is one I will keep in my office, wipe off every so often, and remember my Polish comrades.