Jason Dunham's Mother
Sends Message to Marines:
"Get the Job Done"

Debra Dunham, the mother of Marine Cpl. Jason Dunham, who acccepted the Medal of Honor awarded to her son posthumously for his heroism in Iraq, has a message for today's Marines: "Thank You. And please complete your mission."

Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps General Robert MagnusAssistant Commandant of the Marine Corps General Robert Magnus is making a holiday tour of bases in Afghanistan to thank US service members there.

In the dining facility at Camp Eggers, outside Kabul, he told the assembled Marines that he was bringing them a very special message, one from the family of a contemporary Marine Corps hero, Corporal Jason Dunham.

"Deb Dunham asked me to bring a simple three-part message," Magnus said.

  • "First, 'Thank you.'" the second-ranking Marine said. "Now this is a 'Gold Star Mother' saying thank you, so she knows exactly what she's thanking you for."

    Mothers of American military men and women killed in combat have been referred to as Gold Star Mothers since the early 1900s.

  • "Second, keep doing what you're doing. Keep doing your mission," Magnus said. "She knows that your mission is fundamentally important.
  • "The third part of the message is, 'Please take care of each other,'" the general said. "That's exactly what Corporal Dunham was doing when he was on his mission."

Marine Corporal Jason Dunham, Medal of Honor recipient.The general briefly spoke about Dunham's heroic act in saving the lives of his fellow Marines in Iraq when he covered a grenade with his helmet and his body, which ultimately cost him his life. Jason Dunham was 22 years old.

After eight days, in which he never regained consciousness, Corporal Dunham died, with his parents by his side. President Bush announced his Medal of Honor on the Marine Corps Birthday, November 10, 2006. It would also have been Jason Dunham's 25th birthday.

Magnus told the Marines that he recognized the difficulty in being away from family during the holidays, but reminded them that they were with their Marine Corps family.

"This is a great time to be a warrior and a Marine," he said. "You are God's gift to your family. ... The Marine Corps is God's gift to the United States ... and to the Afghan people and the Iraqi people."

He also reminded the Marines that it is important for them to consider serving an additional combat tour, or staying in the Marine Corps longer, as well as to encourage young Marines to do the same.

"Your Marine Corps is at war. Your buddies are at war," Magnus said. "You know why you're here now. You're here to help these people win back their neighborhoods, and so we don't have another 9/11, and you know that. I want your family to someday feel as comfortable as they felt on Sept. 10, 2001," he added.

"This mission is not over by a long shot, and you know that," the general added.

Return to top.

Return to American Heroes.

Read more details about Corporal Dunham's heroism.

Learn more about the Medal of Honor.

New! Comments

Join our conversation! Leave me a comment about this page in the box below. If your comment is about another page on this site, please leave your comment on that page, because I have no ability to move it to the correct page. Thanks!

Newest Articles

This site best viewed with the Firefox browser.Site best viewed with Firefox