NEWS | March 20, 2012

1st Combat Camera Squadron receives award

By Master Sgt. Keri Whitehead 1st Combat Camera Squadron combat photography flight chief

The Secretary of the Air Force announced Feb.17 that the Meritorious Unit Award has been awarded to the Air Force Public Affairs Agency's 1st Combat Camera Squadron.

The 1st CTCS received the award for their contributions in support of combat operations from Oct. 1, 2009 through Sep. 30, 2010. During that period, the squadron deployed 373 Airmen for more than 12,000 days, supporting humanitarian relief efforts for Operation Unified Response in Haiti as well as Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.

The squadron expertly documented the first flights of the Iraqi and Afghan Air Forces, numerous U.S. Air Force aerial combat operations, more than 1,000 outside-the-wire missions and trained and deployed alongside all military services to include a Navy Task Force and an Army Provincial Reconstruction Team.

Airmen from the 1st CTCS also distinguished themselves by securing both, the Military Photographer of the Year and Military Videographer of the Year for 2010, earning this recognition over all other military branches in the Department of Defense.

"Combat Camera Airmen are absolutely incredible," said Lt. Col. Aaron Burgstein, 1st CTCS commander. "I'm incredibly proud of what they've accomplished in both combat and humanitarian missions around the world. They met all their taskings, everywhere and anywhere, and most importantly, they brought everyone home."

The Meritorious Unit Award was initially approved in March 2004 by the Secretary of the Air Force to recognize Air Force active duty, Reserve and Guard units for outstanding achievement or service in direct support of combat operations.