A Special Tactics Airman will be awarded the Air Force Cross on Dec. 10 for heroic actions during a 2017 battle in Afghanistan in which he “repeatedly” exposed himself to enemy fire to direct airstrikes.
Air Force Staff Sgt. Alaxey Germanovich, a Special Tactics combat controller assigned to the 26th Special Tactics Squadron, 24th Special Operations Wing, Air Force Special Operations Command, will be presented with the second-highest award for combat bravery by Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett during a ceremony on Dec. 10, according to an Air Force press release.
Germanovich was attached to an Army Special Forces team with Afghan Commandos during a mission in Nangahar Provine, Afghanistan, on April 8, 2017. The team was ambushed by enemy combatants, and Germanovich “repeatedly exposed himself to sniper and machine gun fire while directing numerous danger close airstrikes.”
“With the team expending all of their rifle ammunition and grenades, they drew their pistols in an attempt to suppress the advancing enemy,” the release says. “Germanovich directed his team’s withdrawal, then traversed 700 meters carrying a casualty up a mountain to a helicopter landing zone while directing close air support.”
He’s credited with protecting over 150 friendly forces and destroyed 11 enemy fighting positions during the eight-hour battle.
Germanovich will be the 12th Special Tactics Airman to receive the Air Force Cross since Sept. 11, 2001.