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Steven R. Doty


Soldier's Medal

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Awarded for actions during the Global War on Terror

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 2, 1926, takes pleasure in presenting the Soldier's Medal to Staff Sergeant Steven R. Doty, United States Air Force, for heroism involving voluntary risk of life at Forward Operating Base Kala Gush, Afghanistan, on 3 May 2010. On that date, Sergeant Doty rushed to a helicopter that crashed while landing at his Forward Operating Base. Arriving only thirty-five seconds after impact, he assessed the scene while running toward the still moving wreckage and saw that the helicopter had rolled onto one side, was leaking fuel and ammunition and high explosive mortar rounds from the helicopter's cargo were strewn across the crash area. The engines were still running and the rotorhead with ragged broken rotor blades was still turning violently causing the wreckage to shake. With complete disregard for his own safety, Sergeant Doty ran past other people who had stopped and he led the approach to the dangerous wreckage. First to reach the crash, he climbed onto the shaking fuselage, and while fully exposed and only feet from the still turning rotor blades, he created an opening to extract the injured aircrew. He helped pull the first two crewmen out of the wreckage then turned his attention to disabling the still running helicopter while other responders extracted the last crewman. Leaning inside, he reached several controls but couldn't disable the aircraft. Then, acting on past student pilot training, he climbed completely inside the wreckage to reach the throttles and fuel controls located on the aircraft's ceiling. He continued to try to eliminate the danger until an officer on the scene grabbed him on the arm and told him the last crewman had been extracted. The final responder off the aircraft, he helped get the last crewmember away from the wreckage. His selfless act of heroism led to the injured crew's survival. The exemplary courage and heroism displayed by Sergeant Doty reflect great credit upon himself and the United States Air Force.

Action Date: May 3, 2010

Service: Air Force

Rank: Staff Sergeant