August 14-- A grateful nation recognized the sacrifice of Toombs County Green Beret Staff Sergeant Dustin Wright Wednesday. He and three other Green Berets were killed nearly two years ago when their patrol was ambushed by insurgents in Niger, West Africa.
The commander of the 1st Special Forces Command, Major General John Deedrick, presented the Silver Star to Sergeant Wright's family in ceremonies before a packed house at the Santa Claus Community Center.
"Dustin was a hero. Soldiers like Dustin are our national treasures. They place the safety and well being of others above themselves and they demonstrate the true meaning of service and dedication through their sacrifice. For those of you who knew Dustin and those of you who served alongside him, I'm not telling you anything you don't already know. Each of you has memories of him that are special and this medal will become another part of those memories. We'll always cherish and never forget his life and we will continue to reflect on his sacrifice in the weeks and years to come," General Deedrick said.
Dustin's father, Arnold, and his brother, Will, also spoke at the ceremony and Will challenged American's to follow his brother's example.
The family has established the "Dustin M. Wright Foundation," according to his mother, Terri Criscio, "We're doing it to honor Dustin. What we're doing through the Foundation is gathering information on different organizations so that when veterans come to us with a need, we can help them out. We'll provide them with a link or phone number or even funding them to go somewhere for help whether it's medical, PTSD or anything veterans might need."