Capt. Carlos Mendoza and Staff Sgt. Morgan Reed, members of the 379th Expeditionary Operations Group, were awarded Bronze Stars for their heroic actions during the August 2021 Kabul airport bombing. They were instrumental in saving lives in the aftermath of the attack, which killed 13 U.S. troops and wounded numerous Afghan civilians. Their actions represented the critical role of U.S. military personnel in crisis situations, particularly during the chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan.
- Bronze Star Recipients: Capt. Carlos Mendoza and Staff Sgt. Morgan Reed received the medals for their life-saving efforts during the Kabul airport bombing as part of Operation Allies Refuge.
- Roles in Crisis Response: Mendoza, an aeromedical evacuation liaison officer, performed life-saving medical procedures, while Reed, a communications specialist, assisted in emergency medical triage and handling the remains of fallen soldiers.
- Impact of Their Actions: Their rapid response and medical interventions were critical in saving 38 critically injured patients and assisting 40 Afghan family members.
- Kabul Airport Bombing: The August 26, 2021, attack by an Islamic State militant was a significant event during the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, highlighting the dangers faced by American troops and the Afghan population.
- Recognition of Service: These awards add to the growing number of Bronze Stars given in the aftermath of the Afghanistan withdrawal, acknowledging the bravery and service of U.S. military personnel during a critical and dangerous period.