Twelve airmen from the 8th Special Operations Squadron, Hurlburt Field, Florida, joined the prestigious ranks of Mackay Trophy winners at an awards ceremony this month.
The Rooster 73 crew members were recognized for a 2013 rescue mission over wartorn South Sudan where they came under heavy enemy fire. They performed expert aerial maneuvers while simultaneously providing medical care to four critically injured Special Forces passengers on board one of their three CV-22 Ospreys. The mission resulted in the safe evacuation of American citizens from the remote South Sudanese city of Bor. You can read more about the mission in an August Air Force Times story.
The airmen — Majors Taylor Fingarson and Ryan Mittelstet; Captains Brett Cassidy, Daniel Denney, William Mendel and Arjun Rau; Master Sgts. Alberto Delgado and Jeremy Hoye; Tech Sgt. David Shea; and Staff Sgts. James McKay, Christopher Nin and Kenneth Zupkow II — join the ranks of then-2nd Lt. Henry H. ‘Hap’ Arnold, who in 1912 received the first Mackay Trophy for a reconnaissance competition flown over Virginia.
Congratulations, Rooster 73 crew!