Professional achievement in the superior performance of his duties while serving as Squad Leader, 2d Platoon, Company I, 3d Battalion, 3d Marines, Regimental Combat Team-7, I Marine Expeditionary Force Forward, from March to September 2006, in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. During this period, Sergeant Hornung skillfully led his squad on over 200 combat missions, including eight direct fire engagements with enemy forces. He displayed exceptional courage, leadership and tactical expertise as he led his squad in the face of a determined enemy. On 21 July 2006, Sergeant Hornung’s squad came under intense enemy fire as they attempted to reenter friendly lines. Without hesitation, Sergeant Hornung reoriented his squad, quickly assessed the situation, directed accurate fire, and while under fire himself, led them in a counter attack of the enemy position. Due to his quick reactions, Sergeant Hornung’s squad returned fire and maneuvered against the enemy, dislodging the attackers, ending the attack and capturing one insurgent. Sergeant Hornung’s initiative, perseverance and total dedication to duty reflected credit upon him and were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.
Heroic achievement in connection with combat operations against the enemy while serving as squad leader, Company I, 3d Battalion, 3d Marines, Combined Joint Task Force-76 on 24 December 2004 and 12 March 2005 in the Kunar Province of Afghanistan. On 24 December, while operating in the Korangal Valley, 2d squad was ambushed by Al Qaeda forces employing small arms and rocket propelled grenades. During this attack, Corporal Hornung was wounded by enemy fire and continued to engage the enemy while refusing medical evacuation until his platoon was extracted. On 12 March 2005, during operations in the village of Salar Ban, 2d Squad was attacked by 10-15 Al Qaeda fighters. While under heavy enemy fire, Corporal Hornung moved to assist the rest of his team in gaining cover and establishing fire superiority. Learning that two Marines in his squad were injured, he assisted the squad leader in attending to the wounded. After being struck by fire in the small arms protective insert plate positioned over his chest, Corporal Hornung continued to treat the wounded and fight the enemy. By his enthusiasm, professionalism and unwavering devotion to duty, Corporal Hornung upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.