President Bush yesterday presented the Medal of Honor to the parents of a Navy SEAL from Long Island who lost his life in Afghanistan after calling for help to save his team. The debt owed to Lt. Michael Murphy "cannot diminish over time and can never be repaid," said Bush, his voice often choking with emotion. The award is the nation's highest military honor.
Only one man in the five-member team survived the 2005 firefight. Bush remarked on the "grace" that never deserted Murphy, pointing out that the SEAL said "thank you" before breaking radio contact and returning to the fight. Murphy's parents gave Bush a replica set of their son's dog tags, which he promptly hung around his neck. "He's right next to my heart," Bush said, patting his chest.