LOS ANGELES, Calif. (FOX 11 / AP) - Three years ago, Captain Florent Groberg did something a truly heroic in Afghanistan. He took down a suicide bomber to protect his fellow soldiers...and almost died doing it.
Last week, he received the Medal of Honor from President Obama.
In the interview with Steve Edwards and Araksya Karapetyan, Groberg explains what it was like to be awarded such a high honor. "Nobody joins the military for medals...usually, receiving a medal means something bad happened, so on that specific day the President put that medal around my neck - I was very emotional."
President Barack Obama said that the young Army captain who is the newest Medal of Honor recipient had the instincts and the courage to tackle a suicide bomber in Afghanistan during a moment of selfless bravery, saving the lives of many comrades.
Four people were still killed, and Florent Groberg suffered a leg injury so severe that he needed 33 surgeries to save it.
Groberg is the 10th living service member from actions in Iraq or Afghanistan to be awarded the Medal of Honor, the nation's highest honor for battlefield bravery.
"My goal in life is simple -that I was given a second chance, and so I have to be a better person...not only for myself, but for them and their families." Groberg said to Steve when talking about the four men who died.
Now 32 and medically retired from the Army, Groberg is credited with saving many lives by tackling the suicide bomber. Three service members and a foreign service officer were killed when the bomber's vest exploded. Groberg has said he shares the medal with the four who didn't get to come home alive.
Born in Poissy, France, Groberg became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2001, the same year he graduated from high school in Maryland. He also competed in track and cross country at the University of Maryland before entering the Army in 2008.
Groberg deployed to Afghanistan's Kunar Province in November 2009 and again in February 2012. He was helping lead an escort for a meeting with an Afghan provincial governor when his unit encountered the bomber. Groberg, with assistance from another soldier in the security detail, Sgt. Andrew Mahoney, tackled him to the ground where the bomber's vest detonated.
Groberg spent nearly three years recovering at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and endured 33 surgeries.
Earlier in the show, Good Day LA interviewed Alek Skarlatos, the soldier who was known for stopping an attack on a French train back in August. Both Skarlatos and Groberg met, shook hands and commented on each other's bravery, "You did some great stuff out there...that was pretty intense..." but then went on to joking a bit about Skarlatos involvement as a contestant on "Dancing with the Stars."
When asked about the current state of affairs in France, Being of French-Algerian descent, Groberg said "We shouldn't give up - or lose hope, it's sad that this is a reality...but France stepped up! We also stepped up, and will continue to make the right decisions to keep us safe."
Groberg is now looking forward to possibilities of working for the Department of Defense.