A Nigerian-born American soldier, Sgt Mary Ehiarinmwian has been named 2020 USO Soldier of the year.
The award was given to her for her bravery and heroism act of saving another soldier in distress from a car accident in Hawaii.
Sergeant Mary was born in Nigeria before she migrated to Germany with her parents. She moved to the United States in 2016 and joined the Army in the following year.
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According to the narrative published on the USO website, “Sgt. Mary Ehiarinmwian was driving to Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, to conduct Physical Readiness Training. She was not expecting to save someone’s life that morning.
“Ehiarinmwian was unknowingly driving behind a vehicle of a soldier from the same unit. Before she knew it, the vehicle in front of her suddenly lost control and rolled over several times before coming to rest, upside down, on a steel property gate, almost impaling the driver.
“Without hesitation, Ehiarinmwian pulled her vehicle over and rendered assistance, asking the driver if he was injured. The driver was confused and in pain but responsive.
“She then proceeded to pull the driver from the smoking vehicle to get him to safety. She stayed with the driver until medical assistance arrived on site, providing further treatment.
“Ehiarinmwian selflessly placed herself in harm’s way to save the life of not only another human being but also of a fellow comrade. She set all things aside and did all she could to aid and assist. She placed the Army’s values before anything else and helped a soldier in need.
“Ehiarinmwian serves with the U.S. Army’s 523rd Engineer Support Company and is from St. Robert, Missouri.”
Ehiarinmwian indeed has set a lesson for Nigerians, both home and in diaspora, joining many who write the name of the country in the book of humanity.