Bronze Medal Recipient

Col. Jose Monteagudo, 944th Fighter Wing commander, presents a Bronze Star Medal to Tech. Sgt. Steven Hager, 944th Civil Engineer Squadron Explosive Ordnance Disposal Flight, during commander’s call March 5, 2011. While deployed to Afghanistan, Sergeant Hager performed 93 counter-improvised explosive device missions. On one of the missions, Sergeant Hager responded to an Army vehicle that had been involved in an improvised explosive device denotation. Sergeant Hager assisted the medic with extracting three seriously wounded Soldiers from the vehicle while his team helped with two additional personnel injured by the blast. After the Soldiers were prepared for medical evacuation, Sergeant Hager rendered safe the IED near the vehicle and completed the mission. His actions led to the identification of new enemy IED cell tactics leading to the safety of future patrol missions. During another mission, Sergeant Hager was engaged in an enemy ambush. Despite being fired upon with Rocket Propelled Grenades, Sergeant Hager continued his sweep for IEDs and was able to locate the termination point. His brave actions enabled him to collect vital evidence for further analysis that determined the IED was actually a hoax scenario intended to lure his patrol team into the area. Authorized Feb. 4, 1944, the Bronze Star Medal is awarded to members of all branches of military service for combat heroism or meritorious service. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Denise Willhite)

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