Seventeen Rangers were inducted into the Ranger Hall of Fame Wednesday during a ceremony at Fort Benning, Georgia.
The ceremony was part of the 75th Ranger Regiment's bi-annual change of command activities known as Ranger Rendezvous. This year's class of inductees includes soldiers from World War II all the way through today's wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Many of this year's Hall of Famers are veterans of the Battle of Mogadishu in Somalia, which was depicted in the iconic film "Black Hawk Down."
Among the 17 soldiers inducted this year are two Medal of Honor recipients: retired Master Sgt. Leroy Petry and retired Navy Lt. Tommy Norris.
Petry was awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions in 2008 in Afghanistan. Petry is credited with saving his fellow Rangers from a grenade attack by grabbing a live grenade and attempting to throw it.
"Instantly realizing the danger, Staff Sergeant Petry, unhesitatingly and with complete disregard for his safety, deliberately and selflessly moved forward, picked up the grenade, and in an effort to clear the immediate threat, threw the grenade away from his fellow Rangers," Petry's Medal of Honor citation reads. "As he was releasing the grenade it detonated, amputating his right hand at the wrist and further injuring him with multiple shrapnel wounds."
Even after Petry lost his hand, he continued to communicate the situation over radio, having applied a tourniquet to his right wrist.
Petry was a member of 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment at the time. After receiving the Medal of Honor, he re-enlisted in the Army, assisting injured Rangers and their loved ones. He has since retired.
Norris became the second sailor to be inducted in to the Ranger Hall of Fame, receiving the Medal of Honor for his heroism as a Navy SEAL during the Vietnam War.
Norris led a three-day rescue effort of two downed pilots in Vietnam in 1972. During the second rescue effort, Norris teamed up with a South Vietnamese soldier. The duo dressed as fishermen and used a sampan to travel up river into enemy territory. After rescuing the pilot, the sampan came under heavy fire, according to Norris’s Medal of Honor citation. Norris called in air support, which allowed for the three to make it safely back to the forward operating base.
Six months after the rescue operation, Norris lost an eye in a separate incident in Vietnam. Despite his injuries, Norris was able to obtain a waiver and qualify for the FBI, serving as a special agent for 20 years, according to Stars and Stripes.
Also inducted into the Ranger Hall of Fame was retired Maj. Jeff Struecker.
Struecker served with the 75th Ranger Regiment during the Battle of Mogadishu and is depicted in the film "Black Hawk Down." Following his enlisted service, Struecker was commissioned as a chaplain and served as a chaplain for the regiment before retiring, according to the Army.
Here is the complete list of the Ranger Hall of Fame Class of 2017:
- Retired Sgt. Maj. Tyrone Adderly.
- Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Frank Ashe.
- Retired 1st Sgt. Herbert Baugh.
- Retired 1st Sgt. Ronald Grenier.
- Retired Master Sgt. Gilbert Howland.
- Staff Sgt. Ronnie Imel.
- Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Richard Lamb.
- Retired Maj. Larry Moores,
- Retired Brig. Gen. Craig Nixon
- Retired Navy Lt. Tommy Norris.
- Retired Master Sgt. Leroy Petry.
- Retired 1st Sgt. Mike Ramsey.
- Retired Sgt. Maj. John Roy.
- Retired Chaplain (Maj.) Jeff Struecker.
- Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Charles Thompson.
- Retired Lt. Gen. John Vines.
- Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Matthew Walker.