Medal of Honor Recipient Visits NYSE, Breaks Gavel
Staff Sgt. Ryan Pitts helped close down the exchange with a bang
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 24, 2014 11:16 AM CDT

(Newser) – On Monday, former Army Staff Sgt. Ryan Pitts walked up to President Obama, shook his hand, and humbly accepted his Medal of Honor. Obama might have gotten off lightly because yesterday Pitts used that same hand to close the New York Stock Exchange with its ceremonial gavel, and the gavel didn't quite survive the experience. Right after the end-of-trading clanging, Pitts gave the wooden mallet three whacks—and on the third try found himself holding just the handle. Pitts seemed pretty surprised by his own strength, notes Business Insider, but eventually laughed along with spectators.