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First Name: Michael

Last Name: Schafer

Birthplace: Waukegan, IL, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Spring Hill, FL
Middle Name: Wayne

Date of Birth: 16 August 1979

Date of Death: 25 July 2005

Rank: Staff Sergeant

Years Served: 1999 - 2005
Michael Wayne Schafer

•  Afghanistan War (Operation Enduring Freedom) (2001 - present)


Michael Wayne Schafer
Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army

On 25 July 2005, then-Staff Sergeant Michael Wayne Schafer was serving with Company C, 2nd Battalion (Airborne), 503rd Parachute Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade while deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

On that day, SSG Schafer's unit was engaged in combat action against enemy forces at Oruzgan. SSG Schafer was leading his squad into a building when he was immediately hit with gunfire. Fatally shot, before falling to the ground, SSG Schafer turned and pushed one of his Soldiers back out the door. fatally shot is credited with saving the lives of 2 of his fellow paratroopers. SSG Schafer's selfless, courageous actions that day earned him, at the cost of his life, the U.S. Army's third highest award for valor, the Silver Star Medal.

Medals, Awards and Badges

Silver Star Medal
Purple Heart
Army Commendation Medal
Army Achievement Medal
Army Good Conduct Medal
National Defense Service Medal
Afghanistan Campaign Medal
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Army NCO Professional Development Ribbon
Army Service Ribbon
Army Overseas Service Ribbon
Combat Infantryman Badge
Parachutist Badge

Silver Star Medal Citation (Synopsis)

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918 (amended by an act of July 25, 1963), takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Posthumously) to Staff Sergeant Michael Wayne Schafer, United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving with Company C, 2d Battalion (Airborne), 503d Parachute Infantry Regiment, 173d Airborne Brigade, during combat operations in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM, at Oruzgan, Afghanistan, on 25 July 2005. Sergeant Schafer was fatally shot while clearing a house as part of a quick reaction force. Leading his squad into a building, he was immediately hit with gunfire. Before falling to the ground, he turned and pushed one of his Soldiers back out the door. He is credited with saving the lives of two of his fellow paratroopers. Staff Sergeant Schafer's gallant actions and dedicated devotion to duty, without regard for his own life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.


Staff Sergeant Michael Wayne Schafer is buried at Florida Hills Memorial Gardens in Spring Hill, Hernando County, FL.


Honoree ID: 8449   Created by: MHOH




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