Capt. Derek Herrera walked to the stage to receive his Bronze Star with a combat "V". The citation was given after the patrol he was leading came under heavy fire in Afghanistan in 2012, inspiring his men to acts of heroism as he directed the efforts to save the lives of patrol, even as he received treatment for the bullets that smashed his spine and collapsed his left lung.
Captain Herrera was paralyzed from the waist down. He has remained on active duty, undergoing rehab and learning to use a bionic exoskeleton known as ReWalk, so that he could end his career in the Marines "standing on his own, as he did when he joined the Marines". Captain Herrera will leave active duty, standing tall, on November 30th.
Semper Fi, Captain Herrera!