JTAC awarded Bronze Star Medal

New Jersey Air National Guard Tech. Sgt. Christopher Donohue, right, is congratulated by Col. Kerry M. Gentry, commander of the 177th Fighter Wing, after receiving the Bronze Star Medal at Atlantic City Air National Guard Base, N.J., Feb. 8, 2015. Donohue, a Joint Terminal Attack Controller with the 227th Air Support Operations Squadron was recognized for his efforts in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. He was deployed to Afghanistan with soldiers from the New Jersey Army National Guard and the Albanian military as an advisor for the Afghan National Army's (ANA) 1st Mobile Strike Force (MSF). Donohue participated in over one hundred combat missions in which he directly engaged enemy forces. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Matt Hecht)

New Jersey Air National Guard Tech. Sgt. Christopher Donohue, right, is congratulated by Col. Kerry M. Gentry, commander of the 177th Fighter Wing, after receiving the Bronze Star Medal at Atlantic City Air National Guard Base, N.J., Feb. 8, 2015. Donohue, a Joint Terminal Attack Controller with the 227th Air Support Operations Squadron was recognized for his efforts in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. He was deployed to Afghanistan with soldiers from the New Jersey Army National Guard and the Albanian military as an advisor for the Afghan National Army's (ANA) 1st Mobile Strike Force (MSF). Donohue participated in over one hundred combat missions in which he directly engaged enemy forces. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Matt Hecht)

Tech. Sgt. Christopher Donohue on a mission in Afghanistan. (Courtesy photo)

Tech. Sgt. Christopher Donohue on a mission in Afghanistan. (Courtesy photo)

ATLANTIC CITY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, N.J. -- A member of the 177th Fighter Wing received the Bronze Star Medal here today as recognition of their meritorious service in a combat zone.

U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Christopher W. Donohue, a joint terminal attack controller with the 227th Air Support Operations Squadron, received the Bronze Star Medal in connection with a deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom Jan. 4, 2014 through Sept. 2, 2014.

Donohue worked in support of the joint U.S. and Albanian mission as an advisor for the Afghan National Army's 1st Mobile Strike Force, and was the first U.S. Airman to ever complete the Joint Security Forces Assistance Course and be deployed with an Army National Guard military advising team.

Under Donohue's leadership, his team was able to accomplish dozens of flight missions accumulating hundreds of kilometers of safe expedited movement throughout the theatre, which directly enhanced his team's ability to contribute to the mobile strike force strategy through Afghanistan.

Donohue participated as a gunner and scout in more than 100 outside-the-wire missions throughout the combat zone, comprising of hundreds of kilometers of known danger zones, which included Donohue personally coming under enemy fire.

The ceremony took place in front of a standing-room only crowd which included U.S. Congressman Frank A. LoBiondo, 177th Fighter Wing Commander Col. Kerry M. Gentry, friends and family of Donohue, and fellow Airmen.

"What we did overseas is important, and it is great to be recognized, but what it's all about is being able to come home to my loved ones, and a wing and an ASOS that is like my second family," said Donohue.

Donohue stressed the importance of family and the support he receives from his fellow ASOS members.

"Chris just sums up the ASOS mentality," said Chief Master Sgt. Robert Zaniewski, 227th Air Support Operations Squadron superintendent. "His ability to go far above-and-beyond is really what we strive for." 

During the ceremony, Gentry recognized the importance of his airmen, and encouraged airmen coming into the Air Force to take note of Donohue's sacrifice.

"We need performers such as Tech. Sgt. Donohue to get out there and take the fight forward, and understand what it means to make the mission happen," said Gentry.