April 4th Baghdad Airport Captured
Near the Airport
The MUS forces seized the Baghdad International Airport. The Iraqis had expected an attack by airborne troops and were surprised when armored forces reached the airport. The battle for the airport lasted a short period and coalition forces suffered few casualties. One fatality, however, was Sergeant First Class Paul Smith from the 11th Engineering Company. When his men came under fire from Republican Guards who had been hiding in the airport- he singlehandedly held off a superior force until mortally wounded. He was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor - the only one given during Iraqi Freedom.