Hospitalized soldier believed unconscious, surprises commanding officer with a salute

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soldiersalute

An Army Ranger wounded in Afghanistan has the Internet buzzing with a photo that web viewers have dubbed “the salute seen around the world.”

Josh Hargis, whose special operations unit is based at Fort Benning, Ga., was wounded Oct. 6 when an Afghan woman detonated a suicide bomb vest in Panjwai in Kandahar Province and triggered a series of other explosive devices. The blast killed four members of Hargis’ 3rd Army Ranger Battalion and wounded 12 other American soldiers.

Hargis, a 2008 graduate of Cincinnati’s Gilbert Dater High School, went to a nearby military hospital. His numerous wounds called for him to hooked up to a breathing tube and other medical plumbing.

His right hand was heavily bandaged. That hand, his saluting hand, rested under red, white and blue blankets when his commanding officer came into his room to present Hargis with a Purple Heart.

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