(L-R) Chief of Joint Operations Lt. Gen. Ash Power AO, CSC awards a Chief of Joint Operations Gold Commendation to U.S. Army Captain Zack Mauss, Chief Warrant Officer 4 Andy Druilhet U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Joe Buatti, and Sgt. Ian McCallum, from Company C, 3rd Battalion, 25th Aviation Regiment, Task Force Gunfighters, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, during an award ceremony at Multinational Base Tarin Kowt, Afghanistan, Oct. 18. (Photo by Australian Sgt. W. Guthrie, 1st Joint Public Affairs Unit)
On the afternoon of Aug. 23, the MEDEVAC crew on duty received a “CAT A” 9-line request. CAT A, or Category Alpha, refers to urgent medical care needed – evacuate immediately. The victim was an Australian soldier who received severe wounds to both legs caused by an improvised explosive device.
The crew flew out to the location as quickly as they could. Upon arrival, the MEDEVAC pilots had to perform a two-wheeled landing due to the terrain limitations where the wounded soldier was. In less than one minute, the soldier was loaded onto the helicopter and headed to the nearest medical facility.
The medics in the aircraft worked feverishly to restore the vital signs of the injured soldier. With the distance to the patient and then to the nearest medical facility, the MEDEVAC crew managed to complete the mission in 52 minutes. This was within the ‘golden hour’ — the time allotted from the time the call comes in to fly out and evacuate the patient to the nearest medical facility giving the patient the best chance of saving their life.
Nicely done...“The most rewarding part of the night was following the ceremony when members of the unit that hit the IED came forward to individually thank us for the work we did in saving their comrade,” said Mauss. “Although their comrade was severely injured, they were relieved that he is now home with his family in Australia making a strong recovery.”