JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas ñ Two officers and two enlisted Airmen have been named the 2013 Lance P. Sijan Leadership Award winners, Air Force Personnel Center officials said today.
The Sijan award, first presented in 1981, was named in honor of the first U.S. Air Force Academy graduate to receive the Medal of Honor. Lance Sijan, as a captain, was shot down over Vietnam Nov. 9, 1967, and evaded capture for 45 days despite severe injuries. He later died while in a Vietnamese prisoner-of-war camp and was presented the Medal of Honor posthumously for his heroism.
The 2013 winners are as follows:
- Senior officer category: Lt. Col. Grant M. Hargrove, Headquarters Air Force Logistics, Installations and Mission Support, Washington, D.C. Hargrove commanded a joint, interagency team comprised of 88 Army, Air Force, Department of State, United States Agency for International Development, and United States Department of Agriculture personnel. He orchestrated more than 300 combat patrols and 200 key leader engagements facilitating Afghan governance, development, rule of law and reintegration initiatives. According to his nomination citation, Hargroveís leadership, personal courage, and efforts to advise provincial officials extended the Afghan governmentís reach into insurgent-controlled areas and greatly enhanced their capacity to deliver essential services to 2.7 million Afghans living across 22 districts in Nangarhar province.
- Junior officer category: Maj. Randall L. Harvey II, flight commander, 320th Special Tactics Squadron, Kadena Air Base, Japan. Harvey deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom Afghanistan, executing 34 missions as the sole Air Force joint terminal attack controller embedded with an Army Special Forces team. During a three-month period, Harvey maximized employment of airpower to neutralize 99 insurgents and capture 49 enemy combatants. As the lead joint terminal attack controller on a 500 person coalition assault, Harvey consistently demonstrated the highest qualities of leadership on the battlefield, destroying 11 enemy fighting positions despite the devastating loss of his teammate to enemy fire, as noted in the citation.
- Senior enlisted category: Senior Master Sgt. David DeLoney III, operations flight superintendent, 820th Red Horse Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. DeLoney managed infrastructure operations consisting of 156 Airman who sustained a $5 billion plant being labeled as ìBest Water and Fuels Systems Maintenance Flight in the Air Force.î The citation states that he also led 400 engineers and special operations personnel in qualifying more than 3,000 special forces Afghan commandos. As ground forces commander supporting contingency operations, he conducted 75 tactical convoy missions ensuring safe transportation of senior leaders to develop a framework for the successful NATO training mission in Afghanistan.
- Junior enlisted category: Master Sgt. Delorean M. Sheridan (technical sergeant when selected), combat control craftsman, 21st Special Tactics Squadron, Pope Army Airfield, Fort Bragg, N.C. Sheridan pioneered the establishment of a unique squadron reconnaissance team significantly enhancing the unitís ability to respond to global contingency requirements and emerging wartime taskings, according to his nomination citation. While attached to an Army special forces team in Afghanistan, he executed 32 missions resulting in the neutralization of nine enemy combatants, and the capture of two high value insurgent leaders, significantly bolstering the ability of local security forces. Finally, Sheridan deftly responded to an Afghan insider attack, neutralizing the attacker and expeditiously conducting medical evacuations for 23 wounded teammates.
For more information about the Air Force awards program and other personnel issues, visit the myPers website at https://mypers.af.mil.