The That Others May Live Foundation Rescue Squadron of the Year award was presented to the 55th Rescue Squadron “Night Hawks” for the second year in a row at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., Sept. 21, 2021.
The Headquarters Air Force-level annual award is presented to an active duty, Air National Guard or Air Force Reserve rescue unit that scores highest in the categories of mission events, combat effectiveness, squadron accomplishments, and community relations.
“This award really demonstrates the hard work that the 55th RQS has put in,” said U.S. Marine Corps Maj. Benjamin Link, 55th RQS acting director of operations. “With the way we train, we are always ready to take on the challenges that are presented to us.”
This is the fourth time that a rescue squadron from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base has won the rescue squadron of the year award.
Members of the 55th RQS were recognized as the most combat ready helicopter unit, ready to deploy wherever and whenever by deploying to a far range, open-ocean rescue mission which required six aerial refuelings in treacherous weather conditions, resulting in one sailor being saved.
The 55th RQS credited their award to their team members, in addition to the behind the scenes members who make all of the rescue missions happen.
“There is no way we could do it without all of our support folks like the maintainers and all of the people who deal with the paperwork,” said Senior Master Sgt. Brian Yorke, 55th RQS senior enlisted leader. “Support from the 355th Wing helps us push the tactical edge, which is what Night Hawks do.”
The Night Hawks made history by being the first HH-60G Pave Hawk unit invited to exercise Gunfighter Flag, initiating and planning the first weapons and terminal area employment competition, and planning and leading the first joint-contested maritime combat search and rescue exercise.
The Night Hawks embody the ethos of “Always Ready, Always There.”
Editor’s note: The mention of the nonprofit organization That Others May Live does not constitute endorsement of affiliation by Davis-Monthan Air Force Base or the U.S. Air Force.