"Freedom is not Free"
It is paid in the blood of
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Guest Book - The guest
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1. If you are
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for site visitors. They will then contact you via email.
comments for visitors or the webmaster.
Initially, this website listed only Pararescuemen who,
during the Vietnam War, had
been awarded the Medal of Honor (MOH) or the Air Force Cross (AFC). The genesis
of this website addition was an exhibit at the USAF Pararescue School. Large paintings of each of these PJs and a framed copy of their
award citation were prominently displayed in the primary hallway of the schoolhouse. The award citation is a formal written narrative that
describes the events that led to the award.
The schools memorial wall was intended to honor the depicted
men and also serve to inspire students presently in the arduous training
It was quickly noticed that visitors were also drawn to the exhibit.
Civilian relatives of the students, military personnel including present and
retired PJs, and other guests were frequently seen clustered around the paintings
discussing what the depicted PJ had done to receive the medal. The memorial
wall was so popular that in In February 2002, the School Commandant
(CMSgt Bruce Hickson) decided to expand the exhibit to include
Pararescuemen who had been awarded the Silver Star. The majority of the
Silver Star citations were on display during the 2002 Pararescue Reunion
held in Albuquerque and hosted in part by the PJ school. During the reunion,
hundreds of active and retired PJs, along with their families and guests,
spent time reading the citations that now graced all of the hallway walls of
the primary building of the schoolhouse. The exhibit won universal acclaim
for its high quality presentation of pararescue heroes. By mid-2003 over one
hundred award citations for Silver Stars were on display.
The Medal of Honor, Air Force Cross, and Silver Star
are all awarded for heroism while engaged in armed conflict. The
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) is awarded for both combat and non-combat
operations. The Airman's
Medal may be awarded for heroism that involves the recipients voluntary risk
of his life but not associated with combat operations. In order to depict
the peacetime heroic actions of Pararescuemen, Chief Hickson decided to
collect and display the citations for award of the DFC and Airman's Medal to Pararescuemen.
As the PJ school expanded its collection, this website
expanded its lists. Comments from site visitors were mostly favorable;
some individuals were concerned that only the PJs awards were being shown. They
asked why this site did not also list the medals awarded to the other crew
members of the Air Rescue team. The answer I gave in the past was that
I could not publish information that I did not have. Except for the Medal of
Honor, there was no consolidated list of Air Rescue personnel who received
the award of the medals listed on this site. Except for the PJ school, no
one had researched, verified, and collected the citations for the other USAF
Air Rescue aircrew members. In an effort to correct this situation, your
webmaster decided to attempt and identify the rest of the heroes on
the air rescue team. After several months of research, I believe that I now have
the majority of the citations for the awards of the Air Force Cross to all
USAF Air Rescuemen who flew combat missions in the Vietnam War. These
citations are now proudly posted on this
website. While conducting this research, I discovered several AFC awards to
Sandy pilots. During the Vietnam War, the Sandy's were so integrated into
the King, Jolly, and Pedro SAR team that they were for all practical
descriptions, part of Air Rescue. Because the Sandy pilots were a mission
essential component of almost every combat rescue in the Vietnam War, their
citations are also be posted on this site.
Research into the collection of the hundreds of Silver
Stars awarded to other Air Rescuemen in Vietnam is beyond the capability of this
webmaster. The PJ awards are listed because the PJ School completed the
research and provide the information to this site. If an organization, or an individual takes on this task and
provides verifiable data to this site, it will be added. Until then, if
recipients or their families / friends wish to have an individual listed,
they need to email this webmaster a copy of the Silver Star orders and citation.
After verification, these citations will be added to lists on this website. Verification will be through the Air Rescue Association, the Jolly Green
Association, the Skyraider Association, contacting other verified
participants known to have participated in the combat action, or by public
domain Air Force records.
If you know anyone who has been
awarded one of these awards, but they have been omitted, please email
me at email@example.com
Link to list of
all USAF decorations and their order of precedence
Criteria for the wear of Vietnam Service Medals