President Trump Presents Distinguished Flying Cross to Members of California Air National Guard – Video…

Earlier today President Trump shared an incredible story of heroism by the Air National Guard during California wildfires.  Their incredible act of heroism during the Sept 5th  Creek Fire saved 242 adults and children.  [Video Below – Transcript Will Follow]

UPDATE: Transcript Added

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[Transcript] – THE PRESIDENT: Well, thank you very much. This is a great honor. And this is a beautiful aircraft we’re looking at. Look at that beautiful, very expensive plane — for good reason.

Today it’s my profound honor to award seven extraordinary soldiers with the Distinguished Flying Cross for their remarkable courage to rescue their fellow citizens. I want to very much thank Major General Matthew Beevers for being with us today. Thank you, General. Thank you very much. Thank you, General, very much. It’s a great honor to see you.

I want to welcome — and please, sit down. Families, please, sit down. You’re all very proud of these gentlemen, I think. Right? I think. Is anybody not proud of their husband? Is anybody not proud? No? Good. Then we’ll proceed. (Laughter.)

Welcome to Chief Warrant Officers Joseph Rosamond, Kipp Goding, Irvin Hernandez, Brady Hlebain, Ge Xiong; and Sergeants George Esquivel and Cameron Powell. Thank you very much. And I will say that it’s such an honor to be in your presence. You’ll hear a story shortly that was very inspiring to me and to everybody else, and that’s why these are very important medals. And it’s great to be with you.

Joining us are also warriors, but warriors of a different type. They’re called “great congressmen,” and they’re from your area. Doug LaMalfa. Thank you, Doug, very much. Appreciate it. Tom McClintock. Thanks, Tom. Doing a great job. And Greg Walden. And we’ll miss you, Greg. I can’t believe you’re not going to be there. He’s retiring undefeated. Nobody would defeat him. And — but it’s a great honor. And you — it’s really been fantastic working with Greg. We worked on something in particular: Right to Try. Right, Greg? And we got it done. After 44 years, we got it done. So, thank you very much.

Just over one week ago, these brave pilots and crew members of the California Army National Guard embarked on a harrowing mission. As the sun set on September 5th, they boarded two helicopters that are behind me. Then, they flew into blazing flames, raging wind — and it was raging — and blinding smoke to rescue families who were trapped by the massive Creek Fire at the Mammoth Pool Campground.

While they were on the way to the campground, the crew received word from state and local officials and headquarters that it was far too dangerous to continue the mission. “Turn back.” But they decided to continue anyway, knowing they might not return. They knew that people were in danger — great danger.

As night set in, they could see almost nothing through the miles of dense smoke. Using their night goggles and their expert navigation skill, they reached the camp. They found the stranded families — many of whom were badly burned and injured — and they loaded them, as many as they could, onto the two helicopters. Then they made the perilous flight back to the base.

As soon as they unloaded the passengers, they again risked their lives and flew back into the blazing fire to rescue more victims. Their superior said, “You cannot do this. You cannot do it again.” They did it.

The smoke had become even more overpowering, yet they returned a third time. After 10 grueling hours, they completed their mission, having saved the lives of an astounding 242 people. We are proud of them. (Applause.) Wow. That’s inc- — that’s an incredible story. And I spoke to some people that really didn’t want you to do it. They didn’t want you to go back on those flights.

To each of you: Your unyielding determination lifts our nation. You’re what makes our nation great. And we thank you very much. Thank you very much. Incredible job.

Over the last week, these devoted soldiers have continued to rescue more stranded individuals from danger. In fact, less than 48 hours after their rescue at Mammoth Pool, they flew to another treacherous mission. On the first two attempts, they were forced to turn around and they were advised to abort their mission. “You must abort the mission.” But they chose to try a third time, at great risk to their own lives. Through tremendous skill and incredible valor, they saved 50 people from absolute imminent danger.

Our nation is strong because of remarkable individuals like these service members. In the midst of our greatest trials and biggest challenges, America prevails because of the brave and selfless patriots who risk everything so that they may save lives of people, in many cases, that they don’t know. They have no idea who they are. It’s like law enforcement: They save the lives of people that, for the most part, they have no idea who they are, but they’re so determined to do it.

Today, our country honors their courage, and we are inspired by their example, and we thank God for the blessing and all of our blessings that you’re safe. Our nation has really benefited by your bravery.

And on behalf of our great nation, I thank you very much. As your President, I thank you very much. Great job. (Applause.)

And now I’d like to ask the military aide come forward and read the citations. Please.

Okay, thank you.

MILITARY AIDE: Attention — attention to orders: The President of the United States hereby awards the Distinguished Flying Cross to Chief Warrant Officer 5 Joseph Rosamond, Chief Warrant Officer 5 Kipp Goding, Chief Warrant Officer 2 Brady Hlebain, Chief Warrant Officer 2 Irvin Hernandez, Warrant Officer 1 Ge Xiong, Sergeant George Esquivel Jr., and Sergeant Cameron Powell of the California Army National Guard for distinguished acts of heroism and extraordinary achievement in aerial flight on September 5th, 2020.

The brave actions and superior airmanship of these soldiers resulted in the successful rescue of 242 adults and children from the rapidly developing Creek Fire in Central California. Their actions are in keeping with the highest military traditions of selfless service, honor, and personal — personal courage, and reflects a great credit upon themselves, the 40th Combat Aviation Brigade, the California Army National Guard, and the United States Army.

(The medals are presented.) (Applause.)

END 12:35 P.M. PDT

This entry was posted in Big Government, Celebrations, Fire Crime, Heros, Military, President Trump, Uncategorized, USA. Bookmark the permalink.

48 Responses to President Trump Presents Distinguished Flying Cross to Members of California Air National Guard – Video…

  1. Tyshab says:

    Curious how some of them stood 2 feet away for certificate and photo. What’s up with that?

    Like

    • JustSomeInputFromAz says:

      Might have wanted more of the Chinook in the photo?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Bob says:

      Why were they not in dress uniform for this significant award…it would seem more fitting than work uniforms

      Liked by 1 person

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      My guess is that they were told to social distance.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Rowdyone says:

        I watched the whole thing on our local news station. The on scene reporter said he and other newspeople that the President sparred with upon deplaning were given covid quick response tests before they were allowed within shouting distance (they were still on the noisy flightline) of the President. So I would assume that everyone else that he interacted with today underwent the same procedure. And I must say that I was never more proud of him than I was today. He stood his ground when a reporter was snide. When several officials tried to blame the fires on climate change instead of poor forestry management he countered with “the weather will cool again” (why don’t liberals understand that the earth and it’s fluctuating weather patterns that make up it’s climate is dynamic in nature?). He conducted the briefing himself and asked intelligent, probing questions that elicited information that cross jurisdictional cooperation was already in place. When presenting the DFC to the National Guardsmen he twice marveled at their courage to make three separate trips against recommendations from superiors through the smoke and diminishing daylight to rescue stranded campers at risk. He was Presidential throughout the visit and I was so proud that he is our President.

        Liked by 14 people

    • fishon2016 says:

      Politics IMHO, COVID just a wild ass guess.

      Like

  2. CA needs more planes that are capable of picking up water for firefighting without landing.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. JustSomeInputFromAz says:

    Army helicopter pilots are simply the best, gonna show my age, but nothing like a good low level Huey ride!

    Liked by 10 people

    • David Hertle says:

      I agree, 120 knots right off the ground. You know you were low enough when you come back with broken tree branches hanging from the skids.
      Everyone hang on, I am going to pull back on the stick, pull collective and perform a 2 g cyclic climb. We will zoom to 1500 ft, and at the end I will nose it over and you better be buckled in because some of you will be floating in zero Gs.

      Liked by 5 people

    • GB Bari says:

      Totally agree! Been there; done that!

      Liked by 2 people

    • They are the best. I had two uncles retired warrant officers, one still living.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Marsha Frey says:

      Agree! Unless someone is familiar with the hellacious winds, smoke and conditions these pilots face in these fire rescues and water/solvent drops they don’t realize just how dangerous they are. These guardsmen are national treasures – something the media does not shine the light on rather they choose the BLM, etc. We had a friend who flew on these missions as a private company pilot and lost his life. We were fortunate to know Woody Granthum who also contributed a great deal to aerial fighting of these fires. God bless them all and their families who also sacrifice that they might serve.

      Liked by 7 people

    • Rick554 says:

      Roger That!! And if they’d let me , I’d take that ride in a minute It’s the reason Im always in-the front Seat on roller coasters. !

      Like

  4. A Fortified City says:

    Our current President is all about excellence something I have never seen in government. The closest I can remember myself early 1980’s.

    Liked by 8 people

  5. Leon Brozyna says:

    The sort of pomp and ceremony that PDJT relishes … not for himself but to highlight the achievements of others.

    Liked by 9 people

  6. BuckeyeChuck says:

    This is why we are Free; because of the Brave. Go Army; Beat Navy

    Liked by 4 people

  7. bcsurvivor2 says:

    I watched this ceremony live. It was great! True heroes and very deserving of the recognition they received.

    Liked by 7 people

    • bertdilbert says:

      Between now and election day, there will likely be multiple fake stories to prove how much Trump hates our military. Of course “anonymous sources close to the issues”.

      Liked by 6 people

  8. David Hertle says:

    Really happy for Chinook crews in Calif NG to be able to receive their DFCs. They will never forget that mission, nor the recognition that was given. Great job.
    Rotor Blades are churning, diving for the fire, screaming in like eagles for the kill.
    After the inferno, troopers will admire, Eagles of the Army’s escadrille.
    We’re Winged Soldiers, We fly above the best.
    Defenders of the land and the free.
    From the sky we do or die, and let the Angels rest,
    Winged Soldiers are We.

    Liked by 9 people

  9. Dr P says:

    Good to recognize Air NG when you can

    They put themselves at risk often with little recognition

    Liked by 8 people

  10. KalenaCTH says:

    How wonderful. Their dangerous job is often overlooked.

    Liked by 4 people

  11. bluebongo says:

    If western states put half the money the spend every year fighting fires into managing the forests the problem would be gone.

    Liked by 4 people

  12. Maquis says:

    These were awarded swiftly, and timely.

    Liked by 6 people

  13. Rowdyone says:

    At the risk of sounding like I’m sniveling, I must emphasize to you all how important it is for the President to fly in and give solice to those who are suffering. We’re all dealing with limited liberty, potential infection from Covid 19, civil unrest, elitist sedition and an illegitimate justice system. But those who have been made homeless by these fires have lost most everything they own as well. When the President appears, he brings with him the one element everyone needs…hope. And with this President he brings with him confidence that all that can be done, will be done. He didn’t have to come since all he can officially do has already been done. But this President, whether they like him or not, is President of all of the people.

    Liked by 8 people

  14. The Gipper Lives says:

    Thanks for Guarding. We appreciate it.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Kristin DeBacco says:

    These are truly heroic men. So proud of them. They deserve this and do much more.
    The fires look scary just on our TV sets and these men went back into this three times. May they be blessed forever.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. ReglarMerican says:

    The DFC is a BIG deal and well earned! Much appreciation to these Guardsmen and to PDJT for recognizing the good guys!!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. keystonekon says:

    These men are real heroes! That they defied orders to rescue 242 civilians and a couple of days later 50 more, is phenomenal.
    If Hollywood was interested, this is a movie script already written.
    America, THIS is your Army National Guard!
    Thank you, President Trump for recognizing these heroes!

    Like

  18. ohengineer says:

    Those were Army National Guard, not Air Guard, pilots. The Air Farce wouldn’t be caught dead with Warrant Officer pilots. Interesting that the Officer reading the citations was a Coastie and not DOD.

    Liked by 1 person

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