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Fort Drum soldier honored at U.S. Army All-American Bowl

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FORT DRUM — A soldier from post is one of several being honored this week for the U.S. Army All-American Bowl game.

Staff Sgt. Joseph M. Marcel, a flight medic from Charlie Company, 3rd General Support Aviation Battalion, 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, has spent the week in San Antonio, Texas, interacting with players, band members and fellow invited soldiers prior to the annual high school all-star football game.

Sgt. Marcel said being invited to attend the game was an honor and privilege.

“Everything’s been exhilarating,” he said.

Sgt. Marcel was selected to come to the game due to his heroism in Afghanistan in May 2011, when he helped recover two pilots from a downed aircraft in the Paktika Province.

His actions were rewarded with an Air Medal of Valor.

Sgt. Marcel, who has been stationed on post for three of his six years in uniform, described the opportunity to meet players and fellow invited soldiers as “overwhelming.”

He added that talking with other soldiers was a chance to see what he described as the family structure of the military.

The bowl week was also an opportunity to relive some of his own high school playing days. Sgt. Marcel played offensive and defensive line while at Freedom High School in his hometown of Oakley, Calif.

“I definitely still love the game,” he said.

For the week, he has been paired up with James Quick, a senior wide receiver from Trinity High School, Louisville, Ky., who, according to Rivals.com, has received offers from several major powerhouses, including Ohio State and Oregon.

Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. today on NBC.

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