Special Operations News

3rd Special Forces Group Receives Valor Awards

FORT BRAGG, NC In the second largest award ceremony since the reactivation of the 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), thirty-seven Soldiers were recognized for their valorous actions in combat in Afghanistan, in a ceremony on Feb 25, at the John F. Kennedy Auditorium, here.

Five Soldiers from 3rd SFG (A) received the Silver Star, 19 Soldiers received the Bronze Star with V device, 18 Soldiers will receive the Army Commendation Medal with V device, and five Soldiers received the Purple Heart.

During the ceremony, four battles involving members of the group were highlighted in vingnettes presented by a team member who witnessed and recounted what occurred and the actions performed by each man receiving a medal. One engagement with enemy forces led to the entire operational detachment’s receipt of an award for his heroic actions during a firefight.

U.S. Army Special Operations Command Deputy Commanding General Maj. Gen. Kurt Fuller and the 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne) Commander Col. Mark Schwartz presented the awards to each Soldier.

Schwartz said during his remarks at the ceremony that it not the nature of the members of the Special Forces regiment to seek recognition for their actions in combat.

“Every valor award recipient who came across the stage today will tell you they are simply doing their job,” Schwartz said. “As your commander, there is no greater honor than to recognize these men. All of them are warriors who represent the finest caliber of noncommissioned officers and officers that make up the ranks of our (Special Forces) group.”

The following servicemembers received awards for valor during the ceremony.

Bronze Star with V Device:

Capt. Timothy Driscoll
Capt. Patrick Macri
Warrant Officer Joe Vasquez
Master Sgt. Sean Berk
Sgt. 1st Class Benjamin Burt
Staff Sgt. Eoin Oriada
Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Plants
Sgt. 1st Class James Rooney
Sgt. 1st Class Raymond Ysasaga
Staff Sgt. Jamon A. Tibbs
Staff Sgt. Timothy Walsh
Staff Sgt. James Benjamin
Staff Sgt. Robert Bradford
Staff Sgt. Benjamin Geesaman
Master Sgt. Mike Vetra
Staff Sgt. Brett Grossini
Sgt. 1st Class Charles Garland
Staff Sgt. Casey Parker
Staff Sgt. Justin Schafer
Staff Sgt. David Stearns

Purple Heart:

Capt. Timothy Driscoll
Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jason Myers
Sgt. 1st Class Dereck Strickland
Staff Sgt. Grant Derrick
Staff Sgt. Van Meredith

Army Commendation Medal with V Device:

Capt. Timothy Driscoll
Capt. Matthew Golsteyn
Sgt. Major Patrick Rotsaert
Master Sgt. Lani Ringeisen
Sgt. 1st Class Charles Garland
Sgt. 1st Class Charles Jones
Sgt. 1st Class Robert Martin
Sgt. 1st Class Christopher
Sgt. 1st Class Mark Pawlewicz
Sgt. 1st Daniel Plants
Sgt. 1st Class Eric Wagmer
Staff Sgt. Jeffery Carroll
Staff Sgt. Benjamin Geesaman
Staff Sgt. Silas Palance
Staff Sgt. Casey Parker
Sgt. Sean Tapia


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