Salutes & Awards

October 4, 2012

Airmen honor Belgian Malinois

Tags:
Mike Joseph
Joint Base San Antontio - Lackland Public Affairs
(U.S. Air Force)
Tech. Sgt. Joseph Null, 341st Training Squadron military working dog adoptions coordinator, places the 37th Training Group medal of heroism on Layka at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland,Texas on Sept. 12, 2012. Severely wounded, Layka attacked and subdued an assailant, protecting the lives of her handler and other coalition team members behind her

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO – LACKLAND, Texas (AFNS) — A Belgian Malinois became the first military working dog honored by the 341st Training Squadron for her heroic actions while assigned to a U.S. Special Forces unit in Afghanistan.

Layka, an almost 3-year-old female, was recognized Sept. 12 at Joint Base San Antonio – Lackland, Texas, for saving several Coalition Forces team members during a June 4 special operations mission.

Layka had been dispatched to clear a building of explosives and help look for enemy combatants after a brief fire fight.

During her search, the dog was ambushed by one of the assailants. Layka received multiple gunshot wounds to the abdomen and a limb, which later had to be amputated.

Severely wounded, she attacked and subdued the assailant, protecting the lives of her handler and other coalition team members behind her.

Once the area was secured, Layka’s handler and a physician’s assistant began treating the injured canine. Layka was then flown to a theater hospital for the first of several surgeries, eventually losing her right front leg. She arrived in San Antonio in early July for rehabilitation at the Daniel Holland Military Working Dog Hospital.

“This has never been done before by us, but we wanted to thank Layka,” said Maj. Jason Harris, 341st TRS commander, who presented the dog with a medal of heroism from the unit’s parent organization, the 37th Training Group.

The squadron provides trained military working dogs used in patrol, drug and explosive detection, and other specialized mission functions by the Department of Defense and other government agencies.

“The medal is unofficial because no decoration exists for military working dogs, but we felt Layka deserved recognition,” Harris said. “What these dogs do, day in and day out, is phenomenal. They do save lives.

“Layka was shot and still attacked the person shooting her. She’s been through a lot, and what she did is nothing less than heroic.”

Following the ceremony, Layka was flown to Georgia to be reunited with her handler, who is still on active duty.

No longer able to serve because of the injuries, Layka has been adopted by her handler, who cannot be identified for reasons of security.

“He’s very excited to get her and thankful he had her that day (in Afghanistan),” Harris said. “Layka is very handler-protective, which led to what she did over there.”

Tech. Sgt. Joseph Null, the 341st TRS military working dogs adoptions coordinator, said MWDs are invaluable to the armed services.

“She surprised the terrorist, who was waiting to lay down fire on the team. I heard from people on the mission that if Layka hadn’t reacted like she did, there was a potential for multiple casualties,” Null said. “Layka needed to be recognized for her sacrifice.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
(U.S. Air National Guard Photo/Staff Sgt. Heather Davis)

HARM office receives prestigious career-field award

TUCSON, Ariz. — The 162nd Wing Host Aviation Resource Management office celebrated receipt of the career-field’s top honor, the Sergeant Dee Campbell Outstanding Aviation Resource Management Large Unit of the Year for...
 
 
(U.S. Air National Guard Photo/Staff Sgt. Gregory Ferreira)

162nd Wing remembers influential leader

The 162nd Wing mourned the loss of an icon, Sunday, as one of its most influential unit members was laid to rest. Retired Chief Master Sgt. Karen Veltman dedicated 32 years of her life to the 162nd, its members and their famili...
 
 

Diamond Sharp April 17, 2015

Staff Sgt. Daniel Nelson / 42 ECS Name/Squadron: Staff Sgt. Daniel Nelson / 42 ECS First Sergeant: Master Sgt. Amanda Hass Duty Title: NCOIC Security When joined the AF: Dec. 7, 2007 Hometown: Escondido, CA Hobbies: Hiking, painting, woodworking, and Automotive repair Selection Reasons: Sergeant Nelson was hand selected to stand up the 42 ECS...
 

 
MMC_pict

Month of the Military Child recognizes young family members

WASHINGTON – To highlight the year-round contributions, courage and patriotism of the military community’s youngest members, the Defense Department observes April as the Month of the Military Child, a Pentagon official told...
 
 

Airman receives Soldier’s Medal

Master Sergeant Matthew A. Garcia was presented the Soldier’s Medal by Chief of Staff of the Air Force General Mark A. Welsh III, Mar. 25. While deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Garcia saved the lives of two pilots who were critically injured after landing their helicopter on an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan....
 
 

Doolittle Tokyo Raiders to receive Congressional Gold Medal

(U.S. Air Force photo) On April 18, 1942, Airmen of the U.S. Army Air Forces, led by Lt. Col. James H. “Jimmy” Doolittle, carried the Battle of the Pacific to the heart of the Japanese empire with a surprising and daring raid on military targets at Tokyo, Yokohama, Yokosuka, Nagoya, and Kobe. This heroic attack...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin