Capt. Nicholas Lee, a member of the 437th Aerial Port Squadron at Charleston AFB, S.C., has received the Bronze Star medal for his meritorious service during a year-long deployment to Afghanistan. Imbedded as an instructor with the Afghan National Army, Lee commanded 70 mounted patrols, covering nearly 1,500 miles, reported Charleston’s Post and Courier. During the 2009 Afghan presidential elections, he administered and secured polling sites in several contested provinces across the nation. This included leading two air assault missions in the Kohe Safi district of Parwan province that enabled 1,200 Afghans to cast their ballots, who otherwise would not have had the chance. Lee took possession of his medal during a Nov. 22 ceremony. (See also North Charleston Live 5 report)
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.