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February 8, 2016

Soldier’s Fist Bump with Obama: Trying to Go Viral

Military Times reports that “On May 1, 2012, Sgt. 1st Class Justin Merhoff, was caught on video executing an ‘exploding’ fist bump with President Obama. The president was visiting Afghanistan around the first anniversary of Osama bin Laden’s death, Merhoff was on his second tour of Afghanistan, and the two shared a beautiful, spontaneous moment — one Merhoff wants to share with the world.”

“‘I’m just trying to get that video out there and know that other people would want to see that,’the 33-year-old native of Red Bluff, Calif., told me in a phone interview. He has been in the Army 16 years and had, at the time, volunteered for the deployment from Fort Gordon, Ga.”

“He posted the video to YouTube in January, on Inauguration Day. In recent days, he’s used Twitter in many attempts to get celebrities to retweet it. Among them are Jimmy Fallon, Sarah Silverman, Big Boi, Leann Rimes, Oprah Winfrey, Ryan Seacrest, Sherri Shepherd, and Tom Arnold.”

Categories: Human Interest

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  1. FastMovingCloud

    July 19, 2013
    12:52 pm

    Love it!!

  2. 66kicks

    July 19, 2013
    4:31 pm

    A little hard to tell if Obama is smiling, but I bet he loved it. As a politician you want everyone to love you, but it’s even better as Commander in Chief for the troops to show it in a personal rather than official way.

    I just hope SFC Merhoff didn’t get disciplined for conduct unbecoming of a soldier.

    • Justin Merhoff

      August 1, 2013
      2:49 pm

      66Kicks – Nothing negative has happened to me. My command at the time were the ones who thought it was a good idea and my Major was the one who filmed it. I can see how some people could take it as bad conduct but it was in good fun.

      • 66kicks

        August 1, 2013
        3:11 pm

        Wow! I’m glad it worked out. It is refreshing to hear about this kind of working together and having fun while doing it.

        Thanks for your reply, and for your service. I know it sounds almost trite to say that, but I spent 25 years as a civilian working for the Army, and got to visit posts around the world, and there was and is not a group of better folks than the American soldier of any rank – enlisted, NCO, and officer. I appreciated that I as a long-haired, bearded civilian was welcomed to so many places, and I hope I brought a touch of home to the GIs I worked with. All the best to you, and a hearty “HOO-AH!!!”

  3. Mark Johnson

    August 3, 2013
    5:59 pm


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