In a ceremony held Sept. 6 at Camp Murray, Key Peninsula resident Senior Master Sergeant Morrey E. Grymes III, 194th Air Support Operations Group, was awarded his third and fourth Bronze Star Medals. The Bronze Star Medal is a decoration awarded an individual for bravery.

Senior Master Sergeant Morrey E. Grymes receives congratulations from Brigadier General Craig W. Blankenstein. Blankenstein is the Chief of Staff for the Washington Air National Guard. In September, Grymes was awarded his third and fourth Bronze Star Medals.Photo courtesy of Greg Calahan.

It is the fourth-highest combat award of the U.S. Armed Forces.The medals were earned during his deployment to the middle-east beginning with Iraq in 2002 through his most recent deployment, in July, when he was assigned to two different Operational Detachment Alpha’s in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in South Eastern Afghanistan.

“ODA is like the A-Team, or the Green Beret, forces. They are army. We do air strikes for them and we’re air force,” said Grymes in an interview call from Nevada. His commanding officer allowed Grymes to grant the interview under the condition that no specifics would be given.

“This is the first year I haven’t been deployed since 2002,” Grymes said and when asked about the likelihood of being deployed again he replied, “It all depends on who gets elected president.”

Grymes has served in the military for 28 years. “He will probably go for his 30,” said his wife, Winona. The Gymes’ family has lived in the Glen Cove area for eight years. Their son, Michael (J.J.) McCall is a junior at Peninsula High School this year. Their daughter, Brittany Grymes was a PHS graduate and is currently serving in the US Navy in Virginia Beach, Va. She is expecting their first grandchild in December.

The telephone interview ended with Grymes expressing a message for KP News readers about the men and women serving in Iraq and Afghanistan today.

“Just don’t forget. They are still over there doing a job. I know it’s been a long time. Just don’t forget they’re still over there,” Grymes said.

All four Bronze Star Medals were earned by Grymes for combat situations: 1) with Special Forces Group in Iraq; 2) with 2nd Brigade, 1st infantry division in Iraq; 3) with 3rd Special Forces Group in Afghanistan; and 4) with 7th Special Forces Group in Afghanistan.

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