Medal of Honor recipient Clint Romesha humbled by award

Jonathan Karl, Richard Coolidge & Sherisse Pham
Power Players

Politics Confidential

When Medal of Honor recipient Clint Romesha heard he was receiving the nation's highest military honor, the first thing he thought of was his comrades.

"I thought about the great things that so many soldiers did that day. You know, that was a team effort," says Romesha.

That day was October 3, 2009, when more than 300 Taliban fighters attacked the small outpost manned by 53 American troops and an Afghan National Army unit. Despite all odds, Romesha and his comrades repelled the deadly attack on their remote outpost in the mountains of Afghanistan, near the Pakistan border.

Romesha said during the battle, he focused on what he called the job -- fighting off the insurgents with his comrades.

"When you start getting doubt in your mind, it's ... just like a fighter going into the ring, if you think you've lost before you step in for that 'bout, you've already been defeated," says the U.S. Army former staff sergeant.

The battle would ultimately claim eight American lives, making it one of the deadliest attacks on U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

"They'll always carry a special spot in my heart," Romesha said of his fallen comrades. "They gave the ultimate sacrifice. And the honor's to them, you know, they're just amazing.

Romesha, 31, is the fourth living Medal of Honor recipient to have fought in the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq. The former staff sergeant says he is humbled by the medal.

"I'm just proud to be able to wear it and get the story [out] of so many great things that the team did that day," says Romesha. "The great story of what soldiers do every day, you know, the small sacrifices to the big ones, to leaving their family a year at a time, to waking up early every morning to put that uniform on."

For more of this interview, including Romesha's hopes for the future, check out this week's Politics Confidential.