ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A Medal of Honor winner is seeking joint custody of the child he had out of wedlock with Bristol Palin, a former reality television personality and daughter of 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

Dakota Meyer filed a lawsuit against Bristol Palin in Alaska Superior Court on Monday seeking joint custody of their child, Sailor Grace Palin. The child was born Dec. 23.

“Dakota couldn’t be more excited to be a new father and the best dad that he can be,” his lawyer, Kimberlee Colbo, said in an email.

“To him, that means being a big part of his daughter’s life. Beyond that, he’d really appreciate and thank his friends, supporters and the news media for respecting the privacy of each family in this very personal matter,” Colbo said.

Attempts to reach a spokesman for Bristol Palin, who competed twice on “Dancing with the Stars” and had her own reality show on cable, weren’t immediately successful. The Palin family lawyer declined to comment.

Meyer, a former Marine living in Greensburg, Kentucky, was engaged to Palin, but the wedding was abruptly called off a week before it was to take place last May.

Meyer is seeking joint custody and shared physical custody of the child, and the court could decide child support.

Meyer saved 36 lives during an ambush in September 2009 by insurgents in Afghanistan. He is credited with saving 13 Marines and Army soldiers, along with 23 Afghan soldiers.


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