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51st SFS defender receives Bronze Star with Valor

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Trevor Gordnier
  • 51st Fighter Wing Public Affairs

U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Jordan Locke, 51st Security Forces Squadron flight sergeant, was awarded a Bronze Star medal with Valor during a ceremony held on October 12, 2022, at Osan Air Base. Locke earned the Bronze Star with Valor, the fourth highest U.S. military decoration, for his actions while defending against a terrorist ground attack serving with the 475th Expeditionary Air Base Squadron, at Cooperative Security Location-Manda Bay, Republic of Kenya.

“That fight had lasted four to five hours, and within those four to five hours, we were fired upon multiple times,” said Locke. “Bullets were impacting right next to me.”

Locke held his ground under enemy fire, holding overwatch security, allowing joint operators to continue the fight against the terrorist attackers. During the aftermath of the attack he made sure to assist his fellow service members and allies, and to check on their mental well-being.

“One of the hardest parts was the aftermath, because everyone's so mentally and physically exhausted,” said Locke. “There's a huge difference between saying ‘Are you okay?’ and actually sitting down and having that conversation with them to make sure that they're okay and to see if there's anything that I can do on my end to help them.”

Locke credits the camaraderie forged by his team as one of his motivators to keep fighting and what helped him to survive through the five hour firefight. 

“I had a great team. They were the ones that kept me moving forward,” said Locke. “My main priority was going home to my family, my wife and my two year old daughter and making sure my team got home safely.”