By Military1 Staff
During the tense moments after a shooter opened fire during a GOP congressional baseball practice on Tuesday morning, Ohio Rep. Brad Wenstrup immediately went into Army-mode.
Running to the aid of House Majority Whip Rep. Steve Scalise, who had been shot in the hip and was in serious condition, Wenstrup began assessing the situation.
"I found his entry wound but didn't find an exit wound and that concerned me greatly, so even though we were able to stop the bleeding externally I was concerned what was going on inside,” he told CNN.
Wenstrup tended to Scalise until first responders arrived on the scene, ending the terrifying scene that he described as being back on the battlefield in Iraq.
“You never expect a baseball field in America to feel like being back in a combat zone in Iraq, but this morning it did,” he tweeted later that morning.
You never expect a baseball field in America to feel like being back in a combat zone in Iraq, but this morning it did.— Brad Wenstrup (@RepBradWenstrup) June 14, 2017
Capitol police and emergency responders reacted swiftly and courageously – we are grateful for their presence.— Brad Wenstrup (@RepBradWenstrup) June 14, 2017
1. He was reminded of his combat experience during the shooting
In an interview with Fox & Friends after the shooting, Wenstrup said that it was like being “back in Iraq” but without his weapons. As a combat surgeon, his instinct was to run to the aid of those injured on the baseball field.
2. He deployed to Iraq in 2005
Wenstrup was deployed as a combat surgeon to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Of his time in the Middle East, he said it was "the worst thing that ever happened to me and the best thing I ever got to do."
3. He continues to serve
Wenstrup is currently a colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve, having joined in 1998, prior to the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.
4. He asked for care packages to give to Iraqi civilians
Wenstrup's concern for those in need is further illustrated during his combat deploymnet. During the year he was deployed to Iraq, Wenstrup’s sister asked what he would like her to send to him while in theater. He responded by saying he was fed, clothed and relatively safe most days, but could not say the same for the civilian population. The siblings worked to get donations of hygiene items, toys and school supplies sent overseas, and Wenstrup worked with base chaplains to distribute the items to local families.
5. He was awarded a Bronze Star
Near the end of his tour as a combat surgeon in Iraq, Wenstrup was awarded a Bronze Star for his bravery on the battlefield. Judging by his actions this week under a similar situation, it seems to be justified.