#RememberMemorialDay

Memorial Day is the day we remember all the people that died while serving in the military. This holiday not only marks the beginning of summer vacation, but it’s when we are suppose to come together and remember those who paid the ultimate price for freedom.

This tradition started after the American Civil War in 1868, but it was called Decoration Day and by the 20th century Memorial Day took over to honor all American military soldiers. Let me introduce to you 10 Air Force Security Forces members that died while protecting our freedom during the war.

AIRMAN FIRST CLASS ELIZABETH NICOLE JACOBSON

A1C Jacobson was killed on a convoy in Camp Bucca, Iraq on September 28th, 2005. She became the first female airman and first security member to be killed in action while supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. Airman Jacobson has become a hero in the Security Forces world and was honored with a Bronze Star Medal and a Purple Heart. The U.S Air Force also initiated the Elizabeth N. Jacobson Award for Expeditionary Excellence this is given to a airmen for outstanding performance during a deployment.

TECHNICAL SERGEANT JASON LYNN NORTON

TSgt. Norton a K9 handler was killed on January 22, 2006 when a roadside bomb hit the Humvee as they were conducting convoy escort duties in Taji, 18 miles north of Baghdad, Iraq. TSgt. Norton received the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart.

STAFF SERGEANT BRIAN SCOTT MCELROY

SSgt. McElroy was killed on January 22, 2006 when a roadside bomb hit the Humvee as they were conducting convoy escort duties in Taji, 18 miles north of Baghdad, Iraq. SSgt. McElroy received the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart. TSgt Norton and SSgt McElroy were buried together and they share a coffin and headstone at Arlington National Cemetery.

AIRMAN FIRST CLASS LEEBERNARD EMMANUAL CHAVIS

A1C Chavis on October 14, 2006 in Baghdad, Iraq while performing military police training in support of the Iraqi police he was killed by enemy gunfire. A1C Chavis received the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart.

STAFF SERGEANT JOHN T. SELF

SSgt Self on May 14, 2007 while performing combat patrol as a fire team leader and assisting the Iraqis to take back the streets of Baghdad the vehicle he was in was hit by an IED. SSgt Self received the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart.

AIRMAN FIRST CLASS JASON D. NATHAN

A1C Nathan on June 23, 2007 was in Iraq in his vehicle conducting a combat patrol in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom when his vehicle was hit by an IED. He was assign to train and protect the Iraqi Police Transition Team. A1C Nathan received the Purple Heart.

STAFF SERGEANT TRAVIS L. GRIFFIN

SSgt Griffin on April 3rd, 2008 was in Baghdad, Iraq conducting a combat patrol when his vehicle was hit with an IED. He was killed in action and Kirtland Air Force base rename a street to honor Griffin. SSGT. Griffin received the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart.

FIRST LIEUTENANT JOSEPH D. HELTON

1Lt Helton on September 8, 2009 was in Baghdad, Iraq and as he conducted a combat patrol his vehicle was attacked by an IED. Lt Helton first tour had ended but he decided to volunteer with the Police Transition Mission. 1Lt Helton was the first security forces officer killed in Iraq and he received the Bronze Star and a Purple Heart.

SENIOR AIRMAN NICHOLAS JEROME ALDEN

SrA Alden on March 2, 2011 was in Germany when he was murdered on a bus at Frankfurt International Air Terminal. He was en route to Afghanistan when he rushed towards the gunman after he heard the gunman say “Allah Akbar.” Alden was shot as he was trying to protect the people in the bus. SrA Alden received the Purple Heart.

STAFF SERGEANT TODD “TJ” LOBRAICO

SSgt Lobraico on September 5, 2013 was in Afghanistan supporting Operation Enduring Freedom when he was killed in action by wounds sustained when Bagram Airfield was attacked with small arms fire.

Let us always remember the men and women that died for this country. They paid the ultimate price so that Americans get to keep the beacon of freedom alive. As citizens of the United States we have to keep all of our military personal in our prayers. Let’s continue the prayer for this nation and for all the brave solders, airmen, sailors, & marines that defend this country 24/7.

Here’s a video by Abby Anderson and her tribute to Memorial Day 2015

“Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.” -John F. Kennedy

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