Recently, two Air Force Pararescuemen of the 48th Rescue Squadron, Master Sgt. Adam Fagan and Staff Sgt. Benjamin Brudnicki were awarded Bronze Stars with Valor for their actions last year in two separate operations in Afghanistan. The ceremony was held on October 1st at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, AZ. The 12th Air Force commander, Major General Barry Cornish was in attendance. Military Times reported on the event.

Col. Peter White of the 563rd Rescue Group said, “Master Sgt. Adam and Staff Sgt. Ben’s selfless lifesaving actions while under enemy fire are a testament of their personal courage, not uncommon in the rich history of the 563rd Rescue Group and greater Air Force combat rescue community.”

Both of the men were assigned to the 64th Rescue Squadron upon deploying to Afghanistan.

Master Sgt. Fagan’s heroic actions took place in the Helmand Province on March 24-25, 2019 when he was deployed to Kandahar Airfield. Fagan was attached to a Special Forces Operational Detachment Alpha unit that included a contingent of Afghan Special Forces. Their operation involved conducting a raid deep in Taliban territory, according to a citation provided by 355th Wing at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.

According to the release, Fagan’s team was assaulting a compound to eliminate an improvised explosive device (IED) manufacturer. As they were moving towards the compound, an IED detonated, severely wounding one of the Afghan soldiers. Simultaneously, Taliban fighters ambushed the team with small arms and RPGs.

Fagan’s citation said that he attacked the enemy position and laid down covering fire, exposing himself to grave danger. Because of Fagan’s actions, the pinned down team was able to move towards the wounded soldier at which point Fagan began administering medical aid.

He called in a MEDEVAC and moved the soldier to the landing zone, once again, exposing himself to heavy enemy fire. He proceeded to direct further suppressing fire to enable the helicopters to land so that the team could extract.

Fagan said, “Previous training like the Combat Team Leader Course and our spin up at Razor’s Edge with Red Team helped because I knew what I was capable of. I knew what I was physically able to do, I knew I could treat that guy under fire in the dark and training with other rotary wing platforms gave me the confidence to call in a clear nine line quickly.”