DECORATED AMERICAN SAMOAN SOLDIER WINS PROMOTION

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MELBOURNE, Australia (Radio Australia, May 16) - An American
Samoan soldier in the U.S. Army has been promoted for his bravery during recent
action in Iraq.

Iuniasolua Savusa was promoted to Command Sergeant Major of the
Joint Readiness Training Center, in Fort Polk, Louisiana.

U.S. military officials said Savusa killed two Iraqi soldiers
who fired on his brigade while moving toward the Iraqi capital of Baghdad.

According to eyewitness reports, Savusa approached within 30
meters of enemy fighters and tossed a grenade at their position, killing two.

Military officials said his actions ended an ambush of a convoy
of U.S. infantry troops as they were pinned down at a road leading to the ruins
of ancient Babylon.

U.S. Congressman Eni Faleomavaega praised Savusa’s actions in
a statement from Washington, D.C.

"Command Sergeant Major Iuni Savusa is most deserving of
this promotion," Faleomavaega said. "It is my understanding that Iuni
Savusa is the first Samoan enlisted in the U.S. Army to ever achieve the
position of Command Sergeant Major in a military installation or post and I am
proud of him for it."

Faleomavaega noted that Savusa is also the recipient of numerous
awards and commendations from the U.S. Army, including the Bronze Star Medal for
Valor, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement
Medal, Multinational Force, and Observer Medal. He has also received the coveted
Ranger Tab, CIB, EIB, Airborne, Air Assault, Pathfinder, and Drill Sergeant
Badge.

Savusa is from the village of Nu'uuli, Itu'au County, American
Samoa. He is the son of Savusa Tului of Nu'uuli and Talaitupu Savusa of Fagasa.
He is married to the former Mareta S. Iese of American Samoa. They have five
children named Alexis, Alexandrya, Alexander, Alexandrite, and Meiyann.

May 16, 2003

Radio Australia: www.abc.net.au/ra

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