Friday, March 27, 2015

A special amphibious reconnaissance corpsman with MARSOC will receive the prestigious Silver Star on Friday for risking his life to treat Marines under enemy fire in Afghanistan.

Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Kevin Baskin, 27, of Sellersville, Pennsylvania, will receive the military's third-highest combat award during an afternoon ceremony at Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command's headquarters in Stone Bay, North Carolina.

Baskin was attached to Marine Special Operations Team 8224 with 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion during the unit's 2013 deployment to Herat province, Afghanistan. On April 24, Baskin and his team members found themselves under a barrage of enemy fire from insurgents in concealed positions near Kushe Village, in South Zereko Valley.

When a Marine fell wounded, Baskin "ran into the kill zone with total disregard for his personal safety to provide desperately needed aid," according to his medal citation.

He successfully stabilized the Marine and loaded him onto a casualty evacuation vehicle.

But as enemy fire continued, Baskin was wounded in the back, according to his citation. Despite his wound, he kept treating casualties, including an Afghan National Army Special Forces soldier who was also hit by enemy fire.

He then directed the evacuation of the combat casualties out of the kill zone, laying down suppressive fire until all the wounded were moved.

"His actions ultimately saved the lives of four of his teammates and his courage and quick thinking prevented further loss of life," Baskin's citation reads.

The engagement also earned Baskin his second Purple Heart. On a previous deployment to Afghanistan with 2nd MSOB, Baskin was injured by fragmentation from a rocket propelled grenade and subsequently evacuated to Bethesda Naval Hospital in Maryland, where he worked for eight months while he recovered, according to MARSOC officials.

Now with 3rd MSOB, Baskin serves as a company medical chief.

Maj. Gen. Joseph Osterman, commander of MARSOC, will present Baskin's award during Friday's ceremony.