More than a year-and-a-half after the deadly shootings at Fort Hood, the only civilian killed on Nov. 5, 2009 was honored posthumously Monday.
Michael Cahill was awarded Secretary of the Army Award for Valor, the highest honor a civilian can receive.
Witnesses say Cahill was working as a physician’s assistant inside the soldier readiness center when Maj. Nidal Hasan entered the room and began shooting. The incident killed 13 people and injured dozens of others.
"He selflessly and courageously went to the rescue of fellow soldier readiness teammates and soldiers," Brig. Gen. Joseph DiSalvo said. "His act of personal courage and honor will forever be a source of inspiration.”
Cahill was shot while he attempted to stop Hasan by hitting him with a chair.
"He did that day what he did every day, he protected the well being of his soldiers, patients co-workers, no matter what the cost," Cahill’s daughter, Kerry Cahill, said. "He believed in doing the most good every day when it was possible, and it was always possible."
Cahill’s family says the deeper meaning behind the colors of the ribbon, red for valor, white for high ideals, blue for integrity and patriotism perfectly represent the man, husband, father and retired soldier they loved.
"Bravery isn't doing something because it's easy, bravery is doing something when you're scared, but do it anyway, and dad always did it anyway," Kerry Cahill said.
Other soldiers and first responders who went above and beyond on Nov. 5, 2009 were already recognized during a special ceremony held on the one year anniversary of the shootings.