An Air Force Special Tactics operator stationed at Hunter Army Airfield will be offered a Silver Star Medal on April nine at the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum in Pooler, Georgia.
Tech. Sgt. Cam Kelsch, a tactical air control birthday celebration airman, assigned to the seventeenth Special Tactics Squadron at Hunter, can be awarded the state’s third maximum medal for gallantry in combat.
In addition to the Silver Star, Maj. Gen. Vincent Becklund, deputy commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, will present Kelsch with a Bronze Star with Valor for a separate task, in step with AFSOC.
Kelsch is being venerated for his function on April 25, 2018, a night raid towards a high-cost target in Afghanistan.
The Air Force could now not expose wherein province the task took place. However, Rangers had been mainly energetic in Afghanistan’s northwest and Japanese provinces. An Army master sergeant with 1st Battalion, seventy-fifth Ranger Regiment, additionally obtained a Silver Star for his moves at some point of an April 25 assignment.
Those assigned to 1st Ranger Battalion ran 198 fight missions that led to roughly 1,900 insurgent forces killed or captured during their modern-day deployment, in line with the Army.
During Kelsch’s mission, the TACP exposed himself to an enemy fireplace, to name in near-air aid from an AC-130 gunship using 40mm air-to-ground munitions more or less 35 meters from his role.
“Minutes later and without regard for non-public protection, Sergeant Kelsch willingly exposed himself to powerful enemy hearth again, through closing with the enemy a good way to alter hearth and shop the existence of a wounded American crew-mate using dragging him to protection beneath fireplace,” the Silver Star quotation, provided to Air Force Times, reads. Kelsch becomes hit using an enemy hearth. He then readjusted the AC-one hundred thirty′s targeting and eliminated a heavy device gun nest 70 meters away from the use of 105mm rounds.
He maintained the float of air-to-floor fires at the enemy positions even as the friendly attack pressure fell returned and regained composure. Kelsch changed into capable of then become aware of the enemy protective combating position the usage of intelligence aircraft overhead.
With a wounded American and Afghan commando handy, the attacking pressure prepped for exfiltration. Meanwhile, Kelsch ordered one closing airstrike onto the enemy role with two F-sixteen Fighting Falcons using precision-guided 500-pound bombs and 105mm rounds from the AC-one hundred thirty. Kelsch will also get hold of the Bronze Star with Valor for a separate incident.
While serving with an interagency allowing group for a joint venture force in Afghanistan, Kelsch placed himself between an enemy function and his floor pressure commander, who has been wounded at some stage in a near ambush.
“While nonetheless being engaged by enemy personnel in on-the-spot proximity, Sergeant Kelsch removed the risk and allowed his floor force commander to regain his bearing,” the Bronze Star citation reads.
The Air Force’s Special Tactics teams are floor special operations forces that reward employees’ healing, international access missions, precision air moves, and battlefield surgical operations. The groups are created from fight controllers, pararescue jumpers, TACPs, and unique operations climate technicians. Since 9-11, 2001, Special Tactics airmen have obtained one Medal of Honor, nine Air Force Crosses, and 44 Silver Star Medals. Tech. Sgt. Kelsch is the first Air Force TACP operator to be offered the Silver Star for moves in combat during the beyond seven years, AFSOC stated in its release.