On Aug. 28, 2013, Army Staff Sergeant Michael Ollis sacrificed his own life for that of Polish Lieutenant Karol Cierpica when he shielded the Pole from a suicide bomber’s blast. Eighteen months later, the lieutenant repaid the gesture to the young hero;
Earlier this month, the Polish soldier became the proud father of a baby boy he named in honor of Ollis.
Robert Ollis and his wife, Linda, called the tribute to their son “unexpected” and “wonderful.”
“I thought of the baby as a grandson,” Ollis Sr. said “We are very happy and honored.”
To thank Cierpica and his wife, the Ollis family sent the couple a teddy bear they had specially made out of their son’s Army fatigues.
More on SSG Ollis’ actions that day;
According to Combined Joint Task Force-101, Ollis charged toward attackers that had breached the base in a “three-pronged attack.” He stepped between a Polish officer and a suicide bomber who was part of a “three-pronged attack” that breached the base. When the insurgent detonated his vest, the officer was shielded from harm. Ollis, however, was killed. He was 24.
Poland is scheduled to honor Ollis with the Polish Armed Forces Gold Medal on Nov. 8 in New York.
SSG Ollis, a member of the 2/22 Infantry (the Triple Deuce) of the 10th Mountain Division, was on his third deployment to the war against terror, his second to Afghanistan, when he was killed.
SSG Ollis’ sacrifice has already earned him a Silver Star Medal to accompany the Polish honor and now his story will be told by the next generation and he’ll live on in the memory of a Polish child.
Category: Real Soldiers