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MAJ John A. Meyer '05

2020 NININGER AWARD Recipient Announcement

West Point Grad John A. Meyer '05 The West Point Association of Graduates is pleased to announce that Major John A. Meyer, Class of 2005, has been selected to receive the 2020 Alexander Nininger Award for Valor at Arms, which will be presented to him on October 22, 2020, at West Point, New York. Meyer is currently serving in the Congressional Fellowship Program, in Washington, DC.

In 2007, then First Lieutenant Meyer was serving as a platoon leader for 2nd Platoon, B Troop, 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry (Airborne) in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Early in the morning of July 27, Meyer’s platoon moved into the town of Saret Kholeh along with a sniper team and Bulldawg 6’s Headquarters section. They had just completed a key leader engagement and village assessment and were moving into positions along the southeastern portion of the village when they began taking fire from an enemy force of more than 100 fighters. Meyer directed his platoon to fighting positions and returned fire, effectively employing all available assets. Due to the ferocity of his direct, indirect, and close air support fires, the enemy was forced to break contact, and the lull in the fight enabled him to evacuate three casualties safely. The enemy re-organized and reinforced its attack. With his commander fallen, Meyer immediately took charge of the situation, returning fire while coordinating for link-up with the QRF to attack by fire and secure casualties. With the position consolidated and casualties safe, Meyer directed his soldiers to more defensible terrain where they could continue the fight so that others could complete casualty evacuation with air MEDEVAC. According to the citation of the Silver Star he received for his actions on that day: “First Lieutenant Meyer was in full control of his element, giving effective orders in the face of heavy fire from a numerically superior enemy force…In the face of intense enemy fire and despite the loss of his commander, he took command on the ground, and directed the fight brilliantly. His actions saved the lives of many of his comrades. His extraordinary heroism under fire exemplifies the Warrior Ethos and stand as a timeless example of combat leadership under extreme duress.”

In addition to the Silver Star, Meyer has been awarded two Bronze Stars, and three Meritorious Service Ribbons. Since 2007, Meyer served as a Ranger instructor, commander of a Stryker Company in Afghanistan (2011), commander I CORPS Long Range Surveillance Company, and most recently as the operations officer for 1-27 IN Battalion, and 2nd Brigade, 25th Infantry Division. He is currently assigned in Washington, DC, and lives in Annapolis with his wife, Lauren, and his three children: Thomas, William, and Charlotte.