The Air Force awarded the Bronze Star Medal with Valor Device to Capt. Koaalii Bailey, TSgt. Shane Hargis, and SSgt. Theodore Sierocinski for their heroic actions in Afghanistan in 2010 and 2011. The three Alaska Air National Guardsmen received their respective medals during a ceremony at JB Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, on Oct. 13. They are rescue personnel assigned to Elmendorf’s 212th Rescue Squadron. Bailey distinguished himself on Nov. 14, 2010, as a combat rescue officer during a mission near Watapur Valley, Afghanistan. At the time, he was serving with the 83rd Expeditionary Rescue Squadron at Bagram Airfield. Hargis was recognized for his actions as a pararescueman in Afghanistan’s Tagab Valley on April 23, 2011. Sierocinski was honored for his actions during a rescue mission near Watapur Valley on Nov. 13-14, 2010. This was the same operation, Bulldog Bite, in which Bailey was involved. At the time, Sierocinski was a senior airman with the 83rd ERQS. (For the full accounts of the three airmen’s heroism, see their award citations.) (See also The Teeth of Bulldog Bite from Air Force Magazine’s 2011 archive for more on Bailey and Sierocinski.)
The first five days of Basic Military Training will change to better educate trainees on sleep hygiene, stress management, nutrition, and physical training, a move which officials hope will better prepare enlisted Airmen and Guardians for the rigors of life in service.