SrA. Brad Salazar, a tactical control air party airman assigned to the 8th Air Support Operations Squadron at Aviano AB, Italy, has received a Bronze Star medal for his meritorious service in southern Afghanistan in 2009. Then an airman first class, Salazar successfully completed multiple close-air support missions and friendly extractions during his deployment to Zabul province. “His performance was remarkable,” said Col. Thomas Gould, 435th Air Ground Operations Wing commander at Ramstein AB, Germany, who presented Salazar with the medal during an Aug. 2 award ceremony in Hohenfels, Germany. Gould added, “How often do we give a Bronze Star to an A1C? It’s rare and he is certainly worthy of the honor.” (Ramstein release by SrA. Scott Saldukas)
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.