SSG. Dale Flory Is My Cousin
He Is An American Hero
A True Warrior And A True Leader Of Men

He Has Been Nominated For
And Awarded The BG William Bilo Support Forward Award

Dale Does Not Look Upon Himself As Any Kind Of A Hero
We Know That He Would Say, "I Was Just Doing My Job"
He Would Want People To Know That Every Soldier
That Is In Battle Deserves To Be Recognized For It Is A Tough Job
We Feel The Difference Is That Dale Is A Born Leader
He Was In A Position To Make Decisions That Helped To Make A Difference

Dale Has High Respect For The Vietnam Veteran
And All Soldiers That Went Before Him
We Feel That Any Soldier, Man Or Woman, That Has Fought For Our Freedom
In Any War Is A "True American Hero"

Bobbie And I Are Both Honored To Be A Part Of His Family
We Love His Mother And Father Very Much

Dale We Salute You For A Job Well Done
And We Welcome You Home From Your Tour Of Duty In Iraq

"Welcome Home Brother"

Battalion Commander's Recommendation

The Soldiers Were Clad In The Wet Weather Gear, Kevlar, Load Bearing Vest, Protective Mask And Rifle
They Were All Lined Up In A Prone Position Ready To Low Crawl 100 Hundred Yards
As They Began, Their Bodies Inched Forward
As His Commander Looked Back He Saw Everyone Quickly Falling Behind, Except For One Individual
The Battery Commander Pushed Himself A Little Harder Thinking That This Soldier Would Soon Fall Behind Like The Others
As They Hit The Half Way Point The Soldier Didn't Show Any Signs Of Slowing Down
The Commander Could Not Tell Who It Was
The Commander Kept Inching Forward Thinking He Would Not Last
They Hit The Three-Quarter Mark And He Was Still Moving Hard, Although His Movements Were Labored
Obviously This Soldier Knew That His Commander Was Behind Him At This Point
As He Crossed The Line He Looked Around To See Who Finished Ahead Of Him
No One Did
There Were Soldiers That Were More Fit According To Their APFT Scores
But He Refused To Lose To An Enlisted Man, NCO Or His Commander

This Is The Heart Of SSG Dale Flory
SSG Flory Kept That Same Attitude From The Mobilization Station (Fort Lewis) To The Battlefield In Iraq
Originally, Assigned As A Company Fire Support NCO To Task Force, 1-185 Armor At Forward Operating Base (FOB) KALSU, He Was The "Eyes" Of The FOB

According To His Battalion Commander

When I First Visited SSG Flory At A Remote Operating Base Near Kalsu, Iraq
I Was Nearly Trampled By The Officers And Men Eager To Discuss Their Gratitude For The Work Done By SSG Flory And His Team
In A Camp That Routinely Experienced Mortar Fire, The Fire Supporters Had Established And Exercised A Counterfire Drill That Greatly Expedited The Return Of Fire And Had Brought The Fight To The Enemy
In Addition, SSG Flory And His Team Had Established An Observation Post On The Roof Of A Building In The Camp That Had Been Able To Observe And Detect Enemy Mortar Positions
These Seemingly Obvious Efforts Had Made The Camp A Safer Place
And The Men And Women Of The Camp Were Grateful

In My Tour Of The Camp And The Camp's Operations I Asked Many Questions

Typically, I Would Ask Who Was Responsible For A Certain Task
"Who Mans The O.P?" I Asked
"SSG Flory, Sir" Came The Reply

"Who Developed The Counterfire Drill?"
Again And Again, The Men Answered, "SSG Flory Did, Sir"

It Was Only Then Did I Realize That The Soldier I Had Long Considered Solid And Competent Was Something Much More
He Was Now A "Difference Maker" He Had Made A Huge Impression On Soldiers That Had Never Truly Witnessed Competent Fire Support In A Wartime Scenario
SSG Flory Truly Was Providing "Support Forward"

This "Difference Maker" Developed His "Never-Fail" Attitude At An Early Age
On 16 April 1961, He Was Born To Charles And Dixie Flory In Troy, Ohio
By The Age Of Four He Would Face True Adversity For The First Time In His Young Life
He Was Severely Burned By Gasoline On His Left Leg
His Leg Was So Badly Damaged That He Spent Weeks In The Hospital Trying To Recover From The Near Crippling Injury
After Under Going Several Reconstructive Surgeries On His Leg He Was Released From The Hospital Unable To Walk

Refusing To Never Give Up
He Was Determined To Be Like The Other Children To Run And Play
He Continued To Try And Walk
He Never Gave Up Hope
Through His Own Determination He Eventually Succeeded

In 1981 He Enlisted Into The United States Army As A 13F
He Attended Basic Training And AIT Training At Fort Sill, Oklahoma
He Graduated Second In His Class
He Was First Assigned To 2-21 FA At Fort Polk, Louisiana And Then 2-3 FA In Butzbach, Germany
During His Time As A Forward Observer He Clearly Made A Positive Impression On His Superiors When He Was The Unanimous Selection Of The Promotion Board To The Rank Of Sergeant In Only Two Years Service
As A Young NCO He Would Train His Team Continuously On The Ways Of Fire Support
His Team Was Noticed For Their Exceptional Fire Support Abilities And Was Selected To Shoot All The High Profile Missions For The Battalion
He Was On His Way For A Long Successful Career In The Army
However, His Family Changed All That And At The Urging Of His Wife, He Left The Army In 1986

He Worked As A Mechanic For The Chrysler Corporation And Later Became An Over The Road Driver (A Career He Held For 10 Years)
He Was Awarded The Million Mile Driver Award For Successfully Completing 1 Million Miles Accident Free With No Moving Violations
He Changed His Career Goals To Follow In His Father's Foot Steps And Work For The Airline Industry
He Worked At Southwest Airlines For Six Years Making His Way To Ramp Supervisor Until September 11

During the Revolutionary War Thomas Nelson, A Signer Of The Constitution Declared Before The House Of Burgesses In Virginia

"I Am A Merchant Of Yorktown
But I Am A Virginian First
Let My Trade Perish
I Call To God To Witness
That If Any British Forces Landed In The County Of York… I Will Wait No Orders
But Summon The Militia And I Will Drive The Invaders Into The Sea"

In That Same Spirit Of Patriotism Of Thomas Nelson, SSG Flory Resigned His Position With Southwest Airlines And Enlisted Into The Washington Army National Guard As A 13F In The 2-146th Field Artillery
September 11, 2001 Reminded Dale Flory That He Was Still A Warrior In His Heart And His Service To His State And Nation Was Required
He Quickly Asserted His Leadership And Became Respected By Officers, NCOs And Enlisted Soldiers

He Worked Tirelessly Improving His Team Whether It Was In The Field At Yakima Training Center Or A JANUS Exercise With 1-185 AR In California
In 2003, During The 81st Armor Brigade's Mission Rehearsal Exercise At Camp Roberts, CA His Performance Was So Exceptional He Was Awarded A Framed Guidon For The Most Valuable Soldier In The 222- Person HHB

One Of His Most Lasting Contributions Was The Mentorship Of Young Soldiers
Before The Mobilization The Unit Received 13 Brand New 13Fs
These Soldiers Hadn't Even Seen An IDT Weekend Or An Annual Training
These Soldiers Were As Inexperienced In Life As They Were In The Ways Of The Army
Literally, Their First True Experiences In The Army Was Combat And SSG Flory
He Took Several Of Them To Places Like Mosul And Brought Them All Back Home

In Addition To His Initial Assignment To Task Force 1-185 AR At FOB Kalsu, SSG Flory Was Also Assigned To A Balanced Infantry/Armor Task Force (TF) Conducting Full Spectrum Operations In Both Rural And Urban Terrain
Initially Assigned To The 1st Infantry Division (Big Red One) South Of Balad The TF Was Subsequently Reassigned To Work With The 1st BDE (Stryker) / 25th Infantry Division (Tropic Lighting) In Mosul As Part Of The Multi-National Corps-Iraq's (NMC-I) Main Effort
The TF Was The Only Army National Guard Combat Unit Selected To Fight As Part Of The Corps' Main Effort Due To Its Consistent Outstanding Performance

According To Task Force Tacoma's Commander

The Number One Asset That SSG Flory Brings To The Field Artillery (FA) And To Any Unit He Is Assigned To, Is His Outstanding Leadership Ability
Repeatedly He Was Placed In Positions Where He Was Under Heavy Enemy Fire, (Both Direct And Indirect) And He Never Wavered In The Performance Of His Duties
He Usually Traveled With The TF Command Group As It Conducted Battlefield Circulation
This Meant That SSG Flory Was Constantly Exposed To Danger And Was One Of The First On The Scene Whenever An Enemy Encounter Took Place
The Command Group Was Attacked On Numerous Occasions And Suffered Nearly A Dozen WIA's Over The Course Of The Year
In These Dangerous Situations, SSG Flory Always Maintained Control Over His Bearing, His Team And The Situation When Chaos Could Have Easily Taken Hold
He Always Insisted On Going Out On Patrols To Set An Example To His Soldiers
His Actions Were Always Decisive And Inspired Confidence In His Soldiers
On Numerous Occasions He Displayed Physical Courage In The Face Of Enemy Fire

As A Fire Supporter, He Performed Flawlessly
He Was Able To Synchronize Ground Operations With Both Ground And Air Indirect Fire Support In High Paced Complex Urban Environments
Through His Effort The Task Force Was Able To Routinely Launch Counter-Fire Missions In Less Than Three Minutes And Conduct Over 120 Indirect Fire Missions Over The Year The TF Was In Iraq
Every Adjacent Unit To The TF Suffered From Some Type Of Preventable Indirect Fire Incident, Many Resulting In Civilian Casualties
TF Tacoma Had No Incident Due To The Tight Controls That He Instituted
Furthermore, His Tight Controls Did Not Equate To A Loss In Responsiveness To Our Subordinate Units

SSG Flory Is An Outstanding Soldier And Leader
He Positively Affected The Soldiers On His Team And Increased The Effectiveness Of The Units That He Belonged To, No Matter Where He Served
He Expertly Applied Basic Fundamentals Of Fire Support In Iraq That Saved Lives And Took The Fight To The Enemy
He Served With Distinction In Operation Iraqi Freedom Not Only Earning The Respect Of His Subordinates, Peers And Superiors But Also The Bronze Star Medal And 2 Army Commendation Medals For His Actions And Service

He Is Truly A Tremendous Soldier!!!

eosmml5.gif SSG. Dale Flory

One Of Dales Favorite Songs

American Soldier

Written By Toby Keith And Chuck Cannon
Sung By Toby Keith

I'm Just Trying To Be A Father
Raise A Daughter And A Son
Be A Lover To Their Mother
Everything To Everyone
Up And At 'Em, Bright And Early
I'm All Business In My Suit
Yeah, I'm Dressed Up For Success
From My Head Down To My Boots

I Don't Do It For The Money
There's Bills That I Can't Pay
I Don't Do It For The Glory
I Just Do It Anyway
Providing For Our Future's My Responsibility
Yeah I'm Real Good Under Pressure
Being All That I Can Be

And I Can't Call In Sick On Mondays
When The Weekends Been Too Strong
I Just Work Straight Through The Holidays And Sometimes All Night Long
You Can Bet That I Stand Ready When The Wolf Growls At The Door
Hey, I'm Solid, Hey I'm Steady, Hey, I'm True Down To The Core
And I Will Always Do My Duty No Matter What The Price
I've Counted Up The Cost, I Know The Sacrifice
Oh, And I Don't Want To Die For You
But If Dyin's Asked Of Me
I'll Bear That Cross With Honor
'Cause Freedom Don't Come Free

I'm An American Soldier, An American
Beside My Brothers And My Sisters
I Will Proudly Take A Stand
When Liberty's In Jeopardy, I Will Always Do What's Right
I'm Out Here On The Front Line
Sleep'in In Peace At Night
American Soldier, I'm An American Soldier

Yeah, An American Soldier, An American
Beside My Brothers And My Sisters
I Will Proudly Take A Stand
When Liberty's In Jeopardy I Will Always Do What's Right
I'm Out Here On The Front Line
So Sleep In Peace Tonight
American Soldier, I'm An American
An American, An American Soldier

Recommend Rasky's Site To A Friend!

<BGSOUND loop=infinite src="">