U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Rebecca Floto/Photo illustration by Matt Battaglia

On May 21, 2011, Marine Sgt. Matthew Parker was on a patrol in Helmand province, Afghanistan, in search of enemy weapons. Parker, a squad leader with 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, set out with the rest of platoon after receiving reports that insurgents in the area had recoilless rifles.

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