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3P071 - Security Forces Craftsman Badge
Conway Springs, Kansas
Staff Sergeant Christopher Willson

Bronze StarAir Force Commendation Medal Army Commendation Medal Air Force Achievement Medal Air Force Combat ActionAir Force Good Conduct MedalNational Defense Service Medal Iraqi Campaign MedalGlobal War of Terrorism Expeditionary Medal Global War of Terrorism Service Medal
  • 48 SFS RAF Lakenheath, England
  • 39 SFS Incirlik AB, Turkey
  • 86 SFS Ramstein AB, Germany
  • Bronze Star Medal w/Valor
  • Air Force Comendation Medal w/2 Oak leaf Clusters
  • Army Comendation Medal w/1 Oak leaf Cluster
  • Air Force Achievement Medal w/Valor
  • Air Force Combat Action Medal
  • Army Combat Action Badge
  • 2006 HQ Security Forces Flight Level NCO of the Year
  • 2006 USAFE Security Forces Col Billy Jack Carter Award 2009 48 FW Vanguard Winner

SSgt Sergeant Christopher D. Willson, a career Security Forces member, was an Assistant Convoy Commander on 5 December 2005 and providing security for a 29-vehicle convoy on Main Supply Route Tampa, Iraq. While traveling south on the world's most treacherous highway and traveling under an overpass, Sergeant Willson's convoy was suddenly attacked by approximately ten anti-Iraqi forces from both sides of the roadway. Without regard for personal safety, he immediately directed the driver of his gun truck to maneuver to the left side of the convoy placing his vehicle directly between the largest concentration of fire and the target convoy vehicles. Sergeant Willson's vehicle came under a direct barrage of AK-47 fire from no less than 6 enemy forces located 50 meters east of his position. Sergeant Willson directed his 50-caliber machine gunner to immediately return fire. During the ensuing firefight, he and his crew braved the onslaught of thousands of incoming rounds. His actions held the enemy at bay for approximately 4 to 5 minutes allowing the remaining convoy vehicles to exit the kill zone. Sergeant Willson's crew was credited with six confirmed enemy kills. Subsequently at the forward rally point, Sergeant Willson assumed command and control and provided a precise location of the anti-Iraqi forces for four responding Quick Reaction Forces. He immediately radioed a critical nine-line medical evacuation report and established a secure landing site for medical airlift. He spearheaded the ground support for the evacuation of two gunshot victims ensuring their quick transport to a medical facility. Finally, he placed a request for the recovery of three disabled convoy vehicles and provided concise directions ensuring their recovery. Sergeant Willson's superior performance is even more noteworthy when viewed alongside several key factors. This was his first enemy attack after nearly 100 previous convoys. He had never actually been in an ambush scenario prior to this event yet he immediately recognized the situation and acted instantly. Second, this was the first time Sergeant Willson was in charge of a 50-caliber gun truck and he performed like a seasoned veteran directing textbook tactics. Finally, his machine gunner had never operated nor even handled a 50-cal machinegun prior to this deployment and had only 15 months on active duty in the Air Force. Despite her lack of experience, she performed flawlessly adhering to Sergeant Willson's directions. Despite facing an overwhelming barrage of enemy fire, Sergeant Willson rose to the occasion and employed his training superbly. His heroic actions and application of sound and decisive tactics resulted in the protection of all 39 convoy members without a single loss of life, the safe onward movement of the convoy, recovery of all coalition assets and the successful interdiction of a bold enemy plot to disrupt coalition supply routes. He did what few Air Force Noncommissioned Officers have ever been called to do--successfully engage the enemy at short range and defend both resources and personnel. For his heroic actions, Sergeant Willson was awarded the Bronze Star with Valor.

Last updated:2012-12-10 00:00:00