I sat down with a former Ranger medic from 3rd Ranger Battalion for a few hours to talk about the massive rescue and recovery operation following Operation Red Wings. Doc’s platoon was alerted and deployed to Afghanistan within 18 hours.

SOFREP: What was going through your head when you first got the page to deploy to Afghanistan ahead of our scheduled rotation which was a couple of weeks away?

Doc: Some of us were actually planning to have a barbecue when the page came in to report immediately to Battalion. Once I showed up to the Charlie Company area it was a mad house. My platoon (1st platoon) was the only one of the three to get alerted. At first I thought it was a random piss test until we were told to get our gear and hop on a plane.

From the time we were paged to the time we took off for Afghanistan it was well under 18 hours.