Face of Defense: Marine Springs Into Action to Help Accident Victim


Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Spenser Preston, a quick-thinking Ground Supply School student, was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal during a ceremony at Camp Johnson here, Dec. 8, 2017.

Marine Corps Lt. Col. Taunja M. Menke, left, commanding officer of the Ground Supply School, Marine Corps Combat Service Support Schools awards 2nd Lt. Spencer Preston, right, a student attending the Ground Supply Officer Course with the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal at Camp Johnson, N.C., Dec. 8, 2017. Preston was recognized for rescuing a fellow Marine involved in a motorcycle accident. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Tyler Pender
Marine Corps Lt. Col. Taunja M. Menke, left, commanding officer of the Ground Supply School, Marine Corps Combat Service Support Schools awards 2nd Lt. Spencer Preston, right, a student attending the Ground Supply Officer Course with the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal at Camp Johnson, N.C., Dec. 8, 2017. Preston was recognized for rescuing a fellow Marine involved in a motorcycle accident. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Tyler Pender
Marine Corps Lt. Col. Taunja M. Menke, left, commanding officer of the Ground Supply School, Marine Corps Combat Service Support Schools awards 2nd Lt. Spencer Preston, right, a student attending the Ground Supply Officer Course with the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal at Camp Johnson, N.C., Dec. 8, 2017. Preston was recognized for rescuing a fellow Marine involved in a motorcycle accident. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Tyler Pender
Medal ceremony
Marine Corps Lt. Col. Taunja M. Menke, left, commanding officer of the Ground Supply School, Marine Corps Combat Service Support Schools awards 2nd Lt. Spencer Preston, right, a student attending the Ground Supply Officer Course with the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal at Camp Johnson, N.C., Dec. 8, 2017. Preston was recognized for rescuing a fellow Marine involved in a motorcycle accident. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Tyler Pender

Preston was awarded the medal for rescuing a fellow Marine involved in a motorcycle accident on Nov. 29. Camp Johnson is a satellite installation that houses the school.

“I was driving home from GSS class and I was waiting behind an F-150 [truck],” Preston said. “He turned into a gas station and he didn’t see the motorcycle and he smashed into it.”

Preston then exited his vehicle to assess the situation.

“The motorcyclist was ejected from the bike and landed on the pavement,” Preston said. “He was bleeding pretty badly and blood was pooling on the deck. He had broken his left leg, left femur, left tibia and fibula and his foot.”

Due to his training, Preston knew he had to apply a tourniquet to stop the bleeding.

“I was in PT gear at the time and I didn’t have my tourniquet on me. So I looked around at the crowd and there was a fellow Marine to my right. I said, ‘Give me your MCMAP belt. I’m going to use it as a tourniquet,’” he said.

Applying a Tourniquet

Preston’s quick thinking and make-shift tourniquet stopped the bleeding until emergency medical services could arrive.

“We were able to keep him out of shock and at the same time I was calling E.M.S. to let them know we had put a tourniquet on,” said Preston.

The injured Marine expressed his gratitude for Preston’s help as the paramedics arrived.

“We stayed with him. And on the way out he said, ‘Thank you for all you’ve done,’” Preston said.

The injured Marine is currently undergoing medical care.

“He is in the hospital receiving the treatment he requires and is working towards recovery,” said Marine Corps Lt. Col. Taunja M. Menke, commanding officer, GSS, Marine Corps Combat Service Support School.

Menke presented the medal to Preston during the ceremony.

“I am extremely proud of 2nd Lt. Preston and his actions on Nov. 29, 2017,” Menke said. “He used the training he received as a volunteer firefighter and a United States Marine to help a person in need.”