On May 2, 1999, Lieutenant Colonel David Goldfein’s F-16 fighter was shot down by a Serbian surface-to-air missile. A combat search-and-rescue team comprised of Pararescuemen and Combat Controllers scrambled to his rescue. After a hair-raising operation, the Serbs were trying to capture Goldfein who was escaping and evading, the Air Commandos managed to locate and rescue the now-top general in the Air Force.

Reminiscing of his rescue, General Goldfein had recently said that “Because of this combat rescue team, I was able to return to my family 20 years ago today. We will always be thankful for their sacrifice and courage. The night I was shot down, Airmen & Soldiers flew through enemy airspace, risking their lives to save mine.”