Medal of Honor recipient throws first pitch for Padres - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Medal of Honor recipient throws first pitch for Padres

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - He received the Medal of Honor from President Obama in Washington DC earlier this week. 

And Sunday, Marine Corporal William Kyle Carpenter was in San Diego to throw out the first pitch at Sunday’s Padres game.

Even before Sunday's game got underway at Petco Park thousands of fans were already on their feet.

Retired U.S. Marine Cpl. William Kyle Carpenter threw out the first pitch and he did it like a pro.

"I mean my right arm was pretty badly damaged, but I threw a few 10-15 minutes ago and it went a lot better than expected," Carpenter said.

Three-and-half years ago, the thought of attending a baseball game - let alone pitching at one - was something the 24-year-old never expected to ever do again.

"I was labeled PEA, which is patient expired on arrival, the politically correct way of saying, ‘you didn't make it,’" he said.

In November of 2010, while fighting in southern Afghanistan, Cpl. Carpenter risked his life to save another.

He threw himself on a grenade absorbing the brunt of the blast with his body, shielding Lance Cpl. Nicholas Eufrazio.

Corporal Carpenter lost his lower teeth, shattered his right arm, was blinded in one eye and had shrapnel in his brain.

He spent two-and-half years in the hospital and underwent 40 surgeries.

Yet after all that -- he's the one saying thanks.

"Everything that this nation has thrown at me, I'm just very blessed and very thankful," Carpenter said.

On Thursday, President Obama awarded Cpl. Carpenter the Medal of Honor -- the nation's highest military honor.

"With that singular act of courage, you not only saved your brother, you displayed heroism in the blink of an eye that will inspire generations," President Obama said.

An inspiration and an American hero who still considers himself just a country boy from South Carolina.

"You know we're all Marines...we all wear the uniform. I'm no more special than they are. They raise their right hand just like I did," Carpenter said.

https://twitter.com/chiksdigscars/status/480923702776061952
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