Army veteran Clarence Smoyer, the 'Hero of Cologne' who helped take the town of Cologne, Germany in March 1945 as tank gunner with the famous 'Eagle 7' M26 Pershing tank crew, finally received the Bronze Star nearly 75 years after his battlefield heroics.

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Kentucky Air National Guard Special Ops Tech. Sgt. Daniel Keller (U.S. Air Force photo)

Editor's Note: This article by Richard Sisk originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

Kentucky Air National Guard Special Ops Tech. Sgt. Daniel Keller doesn't think his brave dash into the open during an ISIS firefight to help dead and wounded comrades is exceptional.

"It's a given; that's what you do," he told Military.com.

Keller is set to receive the nation's second-highest award for valor, the Air Force Cross, on Friday for his heroism in helping to medevac fallen troops during that battle in Afghanistan's Nangarhar province.

"It's a necessary task that has to occur to get your friends the help they need," he said. "Whoever's available, they're going to do it."

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Air Force Staff Sgt. Aaron Metzger was awarded the Bronze Star with a valor device for his heroism during an hours-long firefight with Taliban militants that saw him overcome significant injuries from both grenade shrapnel and gunfire to save the lives of his teammates.

Air Combat Command chief Gen. Mike Holmes presented Metzger, assigned to the 38th Rescue Squadron at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia, with his Bronze Star on Monday.

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(U.S. Army photo)

The Army awarded a Bronze Star with a valor device to an artillery soldier for risking his life to save wounded personnel before obliterating enemy positions with 60mm mortar rounds during an intense engagement with ISIS fighters in Afghanistan.

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(U.S. Army/Sgt. 1st Class J. TaShun Joyce)

When then-Chief Warrant Officer 3 Christopher C. Palumbo found out he couldn't get back to a battle in Afghanistan, he was so mad that he drop-kicked his flight helmet.

Palumbo, a Black Hawk helicopter pilot, received the Distinguished Service Cross Award on Thursday for his actions during that battle on April 11, 2005. The award is the Army's second highest for valor.

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(U.S. Army/Lara HartmanPoirrier)

An Army recruiter who previously served as a medic in Afghanistan had his Silver Star upgraded to a Distinguished Service Cross after he saved the lives of three of his fellow soldiers while under enemy fire in Afghanistan in 2008.

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