Air Force Combat Controller Awarded Air Force Cross

amlove21

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Unreal. Read the citation, and read between the lines.

"After expending all rifle ammo, they drew pistols to not be overrun. GH (Germanovich) called CAS, carried a casualty 700m up a hill, and secured exfil saving 150 AN/American operators."

Like a fucking LION.

You can find the info to watch the Air Force Cross ceremony on in the article below.

Special Tactics Airman to be awarded Air Force Cross

From the article...

HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. (AFNS) --
Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett will present the Air Force Cross to a Special Tactics Airman during a ceremony at 11:30 a.m. MST at Cannon Air Force Base, New Mexico, Dec.10.

Staff Sgt. Alaxey Germanovich, a Special Tactics combat controller with the 26th Special Tactics Squadron, 24th Special Operations Wing, Air Force Special Operations Command, will be awarded the nation’s second highest medal for gallantry against an armed enemy of the U.S. in combat.

On April 8, 2017, Germanovich was attached to a team of Army special forces and Afghan commandos while on a mission to clear a well-fortified valley in Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan supporting Operation Freedom’s Sentinel. During an enemy ambush, Germanovich repeatedly exposed himself to sniper and machine-gun fire while directing numerous dangerously-close airstrikes from an AFSOC AC-130 gunship within 35 meters of his position.

With the team expending all of their rifle ammunition and grenades, they drew their pistols in an attempt to suppress the advancing enemy. Germanovich directed his team’s withdrawal, then traversed 700 meters carrying a casualty up a mountain to a helicopter landing zone while directing close air support.

Germanovich is credited for the protection of more than 150 friendly forces and the destruction of 11 enemy fighting positions over the course of the eight-hour battle.

The Air Force Cross is second only to the Medal of Honor and is given to members of the armed forces who display extraordinary heroism while engaged in action against an enemy of the United States. With this honor, Staff Sgt. Germanovich will become the 12th Special Tactics Airman to receive the Air Force Cross since 9/11.

Special Tactics is the Air Force’s most highly decorated community since the Vietnam War specializing in global access, precision strike, personnel recovery and battlefield surgery. Since 9/11, Special Tactics Airmen have received one Medal of Honor, 12 Air Force Crosses and 50 Silver Star Medals.

The ceremony will be available for viewing via livestream on the Air Force Special Tactics Facebook page. For more information or additional questions, please email the 24th Special Operations Wing Public Affairs Office at 24sow.pao@us.af.mil.
 

Ooh-Rah

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I watched it - honestly with a bit of proud tears welling.

Always fun to bang on the Air Force, but moments like this remind us all, that the stark reality is that the Air Force has some really bad dudes working for it.

I was surprised/pleased that there was an opening prayer, and I smiled when the phrase “lethal professionalism” was used in that prayer.

The presenting Colonel spoke about this being a case study in love, the love of your teammates; he talked about having not just the will to win, but the will to prepare to win. How often do we preach that to new members of this site every day?

It gave me hope to hear Secretary Barrett talk about our Constitution, and I believed her when she said she felt honored to have been invited to be part of the ceremony.

A ceremony held in a hanger with spaced out metal folding chairs for guests. It gives me pause when I think of the Hollywood award shows - that said, I’m guessing that hanger and the invited guests were all the attention, pomp and circumstances that Airman likely wanted.

I always take the time to fully read citations for bravery when I am made aware of them, but this one struck me a little differently.

Not only was he engaged in combat, he was engaged in combat while calling in bombing and strafing runs.

Not only was he engaged in combat while calling in bombing and strafing runs, he had gone to pistols and was calling those runs in as close at 20 meters.

20 Meters.

Jesus.

Thank you Staff Sgt. Germanovich
 

JedisonsDad

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Why is this not a MoH?

No disrespect, I get that Pitts and Chappie are the gold standard, no argument here, but is AFSOC's unoffical policy to only nominate posthumous MoH's?
AFSOC has a mentality that if you’re in a combat AFSC, you’re just doing what you’re supposed. Not saying gunships are combat AFSCs, but I don’t know how many times we would get medals shot down because “that’s what you’re supposed to do” but the tanker that was hundreds of miles away and never saw a tracer, got higher than what we put in for, and what any guy on the ground got.
 

amlove21

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The presenting Colonel spoke about this being a case study in love, the love of your teammates; he talked about having not just the will to win, but the will to prepare to win. How often do we preach that to new members of this site every day?
Proud to call Col Matt Allen (TMA- THE Matt Allen) a close personal friend of mine. I have known him since I was a pup, and he has never changed.

If you wanna hear him talk leadership, philosophy, and a lot of other topics- we had him on the podcast. It's a great one. He's truly a giant.

 

DA SWO

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AFSOC has a mentality that if you’re in a combat AFSC, you’re just doing what you’re supposed. Not saying gunships are combat AFSCs, but I don’t know how many times we would get medals shot down because “that’s what you’re supposed to do” but the tanker that was hundreds of miles away and never saw a tracer, got higher than what we put in for, and what any guy on the ground got.
Seems like most SOF units are like that.
 

AWP

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Think about it, an E-4 effectively became the ground force commander.
Probably his 1st deployment too.
I hope we can keep him.

I thought the same thing after my post above. A newly minted 5-level, down to his "oh, shit" weapon, making it rain less than a football field away?

Mental.
 

amlove21

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I thought the same thing after my post above. A newly minted 5-level, down to his "oh, shit" weapon, making it rain less than a football field away?

Mental.
This was a salient point that I didn't fully realize and I would like to lay out.

People ask- how is AFSOC distinctive from the other service SOF? What do you guys do that's different/unique?

The sister services don't have a "combat force multiplier" capability, at least not as we do. You can fully expect (after you get out of the pipeline) to be sent out, on your own, to provide a critical function to other joint teams.

I am sure there is a one-off SEAL or Green Beret or something that may have worked with another team- but that's our standard posture. We fully expect young SrA to go out on their first deployment, as the sole representative of AFSOC, and hit a home run if the mission dictates.

We saw it in the Helmand coordinated attack in 2014/15 (I can not for the life of me find the news release on this one but we lost several Rangers and some NGO females to a coordinated HBIED/VBIED attack) when a PJ SrA was the primary dude handling a catastrophic mass casualty event. He ended up getting the silver star. We saw it again with SSgt Germanovich.
 

amlove21

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Question are CCT always attached to an SOF or can they go solo?
Go solo to do.... what? They are SOF, not just attached to. And their primary duty is to operate as a part of a Special Tactics Team, comprised of PJs, SR, CCT and TACP.

Being attached to other SOF elements is an additional duty, essentially, not their primary focus.
 

AWP

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Bing attached to other SOF elements is an additional duty, essentially, not their primary focus.

Which is why you "kids" should look at AFSOC as longingly as you do the other services.

I'll bet a dollar Special Reconnaissance is the heat in 5 - 10 years if not sooner.
 
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