President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of
Congress July 9, 1918 (amended by an act of July 25, 1963), takes
pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Senior Airman Adam C.
Krueger, United States Air Force, for gallantry in connection with
military operations against an armed enemy of the United States on 25
May 2010. On that date, Airman Krueger bravely risked his life with
complete disregard for personal safety while conducting combat
operations with a United States Army Special Forces Team in
Afghanistan. As the team patrolled by foot through the village of
Mullah Wazir, an entrenched enemy lay waiting a mere ten meters away to
deliver a coordinated lethal ambush on his team. Pinned down, Airman
Krueger immediately took decisive action and called in an F-15 strafing
run on the enemy within meters of his position. Using the cover fire,
his team fought their way through a steady stream of small arms and PKM
fire to a compound to establish a strongpoint. As the team
reconsolidated, Airman Krueger coordinated a second attack with a
Hellfire missile, impacting danger close, allowing a separate pinned
down friendly element the opportunity to seek cover. However, as the
team moved across open terrain enemy rounds hit two Soldiers.
Recognizing the dire situation, Airman Krueger simultaneously exposed
himself to enemy fire and coordinated another air attack while other
members of the team moved the wounded to cover. As the medical
evacuation helicopter approached, Airman Krueger exposed himself to
mark the landing zone and de-conflict airstrikes providing cover fire,
enabling the life saving patient evacuation. During the twelve hour
firefight, Airman Krueger annihilated the enemy through judicious
employment of deadly airpower, directing nine danger-close air strikes
with multiple five hundred and two thousand pound bombs, gun runs,
rockets and missiles. His audacity and tactical prowess were essential
in the defeat of the enemy and the survival of his team and other
friendly forces that day. By his gallantry and devotion to duty, Airman
Krueger has reflected great credit upon himself and the United States
AF's most combat-decorated unit since
Vietnam War honors latest heroes
The 22nd Combat Control Special Tactics Squardron
by Capt. Belena S. Marquez
Air Force Special Operations Command Public Affairs
1/26/2013 - JOINT BASE LEWIS MCCHORD, Wash. -- The most
combat-decorated Air Force unit since the end of the Vietnam War named
more heroes Jan. 23-24 during medal presentation ceremonies at Portland
Air National Guard Base, Portland, Ore., and Joint Base Lewis-McChord,
The 24th Special Operations Wing gained one Silver Star, six Bronze
Star medals with Valor, and seven Bronze Star medals when Airmen from
the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron were recognized with the nation's
third and fourth highest combat decorations.
"Like many, the Airmen's willingness to serve at the tip of the spear,
directly going into harm's way to attack the enemy time after time,
represents the best of America," said Col. Robert Armfield, commander
of the 24th SOW. "We are proud to see their sacrifice recognized. It
gives us a chance to pause for just a moment to thank these special
operators and, more importantly, to recognize their families, who bear
the burden of this relentless mission."
During the ceremony, Staff Sgt. Adam Krueger was awarded the Silver
Star, the third highest combat military decoration in the United
States, for gallantry in action against an enemy of the United States
while engaged in military operations.
While on a foot patrol, his team was ambushed by an entrenched enemy
less than 10 meters from the friendly position. The Army Special Forces
team was immediately pinned down and then Senior Airman Krueger
directed an F-15 strafing run within meters of his position to allow
the friendly patrol to fight their way into a compound and establish a
"He took care of us on that day," said one of Krueger's Special Forces
teammates, who attended the ceremony.
Pictured; Lt. Gen. Eric E. Fiel, Air Force Special Operations Command commander,
pins the Silver Star Medal onto Staff Sgt. Adam Krueger, 22nd Special
Tactics Squadron Combat Controller, Jan. 24, 2013, at a ceremony at
Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Krueger was awarded the medal for
displaying gallantry in action against an armed enemy of the United
States, risking his life in order to direct life-saving air support, as
well as exposing himself in order to direct a medical evacuation
helicopter to the scene, during a 12-hour firefight in Afghanistan in
2010. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Sean Tobin)
During the subsequent 12-hour firefight, two Soldiers were hit with
enemy rounds. Kruger exposed himself to enemy fire in order to direct
another air attack to allow the wounded members to be moved to safety.
He then exposed himself again to mark the landing zone for the medical
evacuation helicopter, enabling the life-saving patient evacuation.
Additionally, Airman Krueger directed nine danger-close airstrikes.
Krueger's receipt of the medal marks the 32nd Silver Star earned by Air
Force Special Operations Command Special Tactics Airmen since 9/11.
"It takes an uncommon bravery to put oneself in direct danger," said
Lt. Gen. Eric Fiel, AFSOC commander. "If I were to ask any one of these
men what they think about these decorations, I'm sure that they would
all humbly respond that they were just doing their job."
Fiel told the audience what doing their job and more means for a
deployed Combat Controller as he described actions that resulted in the
sixth Silver Star awarded to the 22nd STS.
"Repeatedly exposing oneself to enemy fire after being pinned down by a
coordinated, lethal ambush, coordinating for nine danger-close air
strikes which allowed your teammates to seek cover and recover wounded
personnel, and providing suppressive fire while simultaneously marking
a landing zone to enable a life-saving patient evacuation, without
regard to one's own safety, as Staff Sgt. Adam Krueger did, is more
than just doing your job," he said.
Fiel also recognized the courageous actions of the Bronze Star and
Bronze Star with Valor recipients.
The Bronze Star is the fourth highest combat honor in the United States
and is awarded for acts of bravery and meritorious service against an
armed enemy of the United States. When the Bronze Star is awarded for
heroism, it is annotated by a bronze "V" device, which designates valor.
Many of the honorees were awarded their third or fourth Bronze Star. As
a result, they received oak leaf clusters, which are worn on the medal
or ribbon to indicate subsequent awards.
According to the medal citations, the recipients contributed to
coordinated air attacks, ground combat support, casualty medical
evacuation capabilities, and lives saved, all while engaged in combat
Doug Neville with family, along with Lt. Gen Eric Fiel. Doug received another
Bronze Star w/Valor.
"Though each of these men are being recognized for their courage, these
decorations were earned in years [of preparation]--through long
physical, mental and technical training pipelines. Across experiences
from previous deployments and through the lessons passed on by the men
who bore the standard before them," Fiel said.
In order to earn the right to
wear the scarlet beret, the mark of Combat Controllers, candidates must
complete 35 weeks of initial
training. Additional training for the career field includes pipeline
courses which result in mastery of parachuting skills, combat diving,
survival techniques, special tactics skills and qualifications in air
Before the group heard the citations, Fiel prepared to award the medals
to the 13 recipients with one final statement.
Lt. Col. Thad Allen, 22 STS commander, who has known the Silver Star
recipient since 2008, said Krueger, like many other Combat Controllers
across AFSOC, trained for years honing his skills to deal with the
complexities of combat.
"Often, it's Senior Airmen, like Adam, making life or death decisions
under fire, with potential strategic impact. That in and of itself is
impressive," he said.
During the ceremony speech, Fiel also addressed the family members in
"Between a demanding pace of today's global special operations and your
community's commitment to quiet professionalism we do not come together
often enough to recognize the tremendous dedication of our special
tactics," Fiel said. "But it is truly a pleasure for me to reflect on
their accomplishments, particularly in the presence of family members
and of course, the squadron teammates."
He also emphasized the significance of family support to the AFSOC
mission and offered them a special message.
SSgt. Jeremiah Roberts with family and Lt. Gen. Fiel after the Bronze Star
"I thank you personally for everything you do, every day for the
nation," Fiel said. "It does not go unnoticed. Our military families
make extraordinary, unique sacrifices to support our mission and we
sincerely appreciate your contributions to our nation's security."
"The stories...are inspiring and call each of us to rededicate
ourselves, preparing for our own moment of opportunity, when a critical
mission and the lives of our teammates will demand that we realize our
honorees were: Silver Star and Bronze Star: Staff Sgt. Adam Krueger,
see video below.
Star with Valor
Master Sgt. Douglas Neville
Tech. Sgt. Michael Orlando
Staff Sgt. Joshua Busch
Staff Sgt. Jeremiah Roberts
Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Salazar
Staff Sgt. Michael Wilhelm
Captain Joshua Barlow
Tech. Sgt. Michael A. Kurta
Tech. Sgt. Matthew McKenna
SA Benjamin De Boer
SA Christopher Kagan
SA John Moyle
Pictured above in video; Linda Crate with Lt. Gen.
Fiel, Stephanie and Lt. Col. Thaddeus Allen (commander of the 22nd) at Awards
Special thanks to Linda Crate.
Airmen at the 125th Special Tactics Squadron received
two Bronze Stars with Valor, four Bronze Stars, and a Purple Heart
during a ceremony at Portland Air National Guard Base, Portland, Ore.,
Ore. - Oregon Air National Guard personnel will be awarded Bronze Star medals
and the Purple Heart medal during a ceremony scheduled for 3:30 p.m. on
Wednesday, Jan. 23 at Portland Air National Guard Base.
the Oregon Air National Guard's 125th Special Tactics Squadron salute
the honor guard during the posting of colors at a ceremony held at the
Portland Air National Guard Base, Portland, Ore., Jan. 23. The ceremony
was to honor the group with five Bronze Star Medals and one Purple
Heart medal. The Airmen earned the medals during recent deployments to
the Middle East. From left to right are;U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Eric E.
Fiel, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, flew in from
his headquarters at Hulburt Field, Fla., for the ceremony. (Oregon Air
National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing
Oregon Airmen to receive Bronze Stars, Purple Heart during
ceremony at Portland Air Guard Base - 01/22/13
The commander of
Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC), Lt. Gen. Eric E. Fiel, will award
six Bronze Stars and one Purple Heart to Airmen of the 125th Special Tactics
Squadron (STS) at the ceremony.
The address of the Portland Air National
Guard Base is 6801 NE Cornfoot Road, Portland, Ore. The ceremony is scheduled to
be held in the Rosenbaum Hangar, Bldg. 375.
Presiding over the ceremony
will be Brig. Gen. Steven D. Gregg, commander of the Oregon Air National Guard.
The Airmen being honored conducted duties in Afghanistan as Combat
Controllers in support of U.S. Central Command's Village Stability Operations
since May 2011. The Airmen worked alongside Navy SEALS, U.S. Army Special Forces
and Marine Special Operations Team with "unmatched success and uncommon valor on
the battlefield" over the past 18 months, Gregg said.
"Their actions on
the battlefield have increased regional security, saved countless lives, and
provided opportunity for village, district, and provincial growth of the
Afghanistan government," Gregg said.
According to the citations, the
Oregon Citizen-Airmen are being recognized for their exemplary leadership,
personal endeavor and devotion to duty during their deployment. All of them
directly engaged the enemy during six months of intense fighting, calling in
close-air support strikes killing or capturing hundreds of enemy fighters.
The 125th STS is responsible for training, equipping, and employing
combat control (CCT), Special Operations Weather Team (SOWT), and support
personnel to successfully execute special tactics operations domestically and
worldwide in support of both state and federal missions.
establishment of the unit on May 27, 2005, the 125th STS has deployed forces in
support of numerous combat operations during Operation Enduring Freedom in
Afghanistan, and Operations Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn in Iraq.
has also responded to numerous domestic response operations to include:
Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Rita, Hurricane Ike, and severe flooding in
Vernonia, Ore. Currently, the unit is undergoing its first mobilization in which
operators are filling a critical need as Joint Terminal Attack Controllers
(JTACs) in Village Security Operations in the remote areas of Afghanistan.