Among other tasks, Special Forces soldiers are experts at winning people’s hearts and minds. This skillset is particularly useful in a counterinsurgency context. It also comes in handy in other circumstances. For the past few years, the Green Berets of 1st Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group—which is forward-based in Germany—have been saving the lives of civilians.
Last December, a middle-aged German woman collapsed in the food court of Patch Barracks. Two Special Forces soldiers, who were having their lunch, jumped in to help. They found her unresponsive and without a pulse. Performing intensive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), they managed to revive and stabilize her until the local emergency medical technicians arrived on the scene. Because of their prompt and decisive actions, the woman survived.
But this hasn’t been the only occasion where Green Berets have stepped in during an emergency and provided life-saving treatment. Last fall, a Green Berets was driving on a road close to Panzer Kaserne, a U.S. military installation close to Stuttgart where the 1st Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group is based. He saw a bunch of people standing on the shoulder of the road, hovering over a woman who was lying on the pavement. He jumped out of his car and sprinted toward the unresponsive woman. After a quick assessment, he discovered that she wasn’t breathing. He immediately began performing CPR. After a few tense moments, the woman came back to life.
Speaking of the incident, the Green Beret said, “I felt it was the right thing to do, [although] the language barrier made it hard to determine exactly what was going on.”