FORT BENNING, Ga.—An Army soldier who died from wounds suffered in a 2009 ambush in Afghanistan has been awarded the Silver Star medal.

The posthumous award for Sgt. 1st Class Kenneth W. Westbrook was presented to his widow Friday during a ceremony at Fort Benning in west Georgia.

The Columbus Ledger-Enquirer reports ( http://bit.ly/15oqbES) Westbrook was 41 when he was wounded in a September 2009 battle in Afghanistan's Ganjgal Valley. He died in October. Commanders say Westbrook placed himself in the line of enemy fire as he helped mark enemy positions so that allied Afghan forces could eliminate them.

Westbrook was assigned to the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division based at Fort Riley, Kan. He trained at Fort Benning when he joined the Army after graduating from high school in Shiprock, N.M.

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Information from: Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, http://ledger-enquirer.com