HomeNewsArticle Display

Special Tactics Airmen to receive high medals of valor

Pope Army Airfield, N.C. -- One U.S. Air Force Special Tactics Airman from 21st Special Tactics Squadron, 24th Special Operations Wing, will receive the Air Force Cross, and two Special Tactics Airman, 21 STS, will receive the Silver Star for courageous actions during a 48-hour battle against nearly 100 insurgents in Afghanistan while embedded with a U.S. Army Special Forces team, here May 6, 2015.

The ceremony, officiated by U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Bradley A. Heithold, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, will take place at 10 a.m. on Pope Army Airfield, and will include special remarks from U.S. Navy Vice Adm. Sean A. Pybus, deputy commander of Special Operations Command, and U.S. Army Capt. Evan Lacenski, 7th Group Special Forces, Special Forces team leader for the three combat controllers.

These Special Tactics combat controllers are credited with saving the lives of 38 coalition soliders when ammo was low and nearly 100 insurgents surged to capture the team. Senior Airman Dustin Temple will receive the Air Force Cross, and Tech. Sgt. Matthew Greiner and Senior Airman Goodie Goodman will receive the Silver Star.

Temple is one of seven Airmen to receive the second highest valor award in the global war on terror. This is the second battle in the last 15 years of U.S. Air Force history that has resulted in multiple decorations of the highest valor.

The Air Force Cross is the highest service-specific medal an Airman can receive, second only to the Medal of Honor. The Silver Star is the U.S. military’s third highest military decoration for valor.

Editor's Note: Media e-packets are available upon request. If unable to attend the ceremony, media may interview the Airmen via teleconference May 5. RSVP required by May 4. Please direct inquiries to 24 SOW Public Affairs at (850) 884-3902.