Army second lieutenant is the entry – level rank for commissioned officers and usually commands a platoon size of 16 to 44 soldiers. Individuals who have gained attendance in an ROTC program or have completed at least a 4 years college course and Officer Candidate School may gain entrance as a Second Lieutenant in the military. Lawyers and medical professionals may receive direct commission as second lieutenant and enlisted soldiers may receive battlefield commission for displaying excellent leadership and bravery in battle.
After completing a cadet’s course an individual is commissioned as a second lieutenant and the first step he does as an officer is to improve his skills by attending the Basic Course. Some officers opt to join the Airborne or Ranger training or both. A second lieutenant can expect to be promoted to a first lieutenant once he had finished his training and had developed his leadership capabilities. In takes two years to get promoted to a first lieutenant.
One of the United States Army Second Lieutenant during the World War II had risk his life in the line of fire for his platoon to get into a cover position while he continued attacking the enemies.
Second Lieutenant Robert Craig was a Medal of Honor awardee who entered the US Army during World War II and was commissioned as a second lieutenant of the 15th infantry of the Third Infantry Division.
During his service he led his troop on July 11, 1943 in the Operation Husky, the Allied invasion of Sicily. He was set out to destroy the Italian Army machine gun emplacement that had hampered the advancement of his company. Three other officers had tried to locate the machine gun but were wounded and Craig made his attempt thereafter and was able to locate the enemy position. He was able to get within 35 yards of the gun before being discovered. He was attacked by the enemy’s fire but he was able to reach the machine gun’s location and killed its crewmen.
Craig’s platoon made further advancement but is in a position where there is no cover or concealment on the downhill and they were met with fire from their enemies. Knowing this, Craig ordered his men to withdraw and go over the crest for cover while he himself drew the enemy’s fire to himself. He attacked the enemy until he was within 25 yards from them. He killed five and wounded three soldiers while providing cover for his men to enable them to reach cover. Second Lieutenant Craig was killed by the enemy fire but his men continued the fight inspired by his actions which gained them the victory.
Second Lieutenant Robert Craig was awarded the Medal of Honor for his gallantry who had risked his life in the line of fire for the mission’s success. What he has done is over and beyond the call of his duty and men like him had continued to inspire those who are in service.
There are many men in service like private, sergeant and second lieutenant who continue to serve their country in defense of freedom. Some are fully recognized and some have been totally forgotten but the inspiration they created in the history will never be forgotten by those who remembered their courage.