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  • TRAVELING ABROAD - Airman deployed to a foreign country learns a few rules of the road while visiting Bogota, Colombia

    Bogota, Colombia, is a city of contrasts, consisting of high-rise buildings standing next to colonial churches. It's a city of universities, theaters and shantytowns. It is a mixture of influences, Spanish, English and Indian. It's a city of great wealth and unprecedented poverty.When I visited Bogota to do a story on an Air Force team working with
  • GETTING HIGH IN COLOMBIA - Instructors assist South American forces

    In Bogota, Columbia, about 8 million people are nestled high in the Andes Mountains at more than 8,600 feet above sea level. That makes the Colombian air force's newly installed aerospace physiology altitude chamber facility, or the commando aero de transporte, the highest in the world.So when a three-man U.S. Air Force mobile training team spent
  • SHUDDER TO SHUTTER

    A month after I'd graduated from the technical school that officially transformed me from amateur shutterbug to professional Air Force photographer in March 2002, I received my initial alert assignment. It wasn't at all what I expected, and it gave me my first real look at how fragile life can be.Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., was my first duty
  • OH, HENRY! - Airman is world-class bodybuilder

    When Tech. Sgt. David Henry was in high school, he played drum in the marching band. But he isn't your typical band camper. Henry is a muscle-bound Mr. Olympia.A weapons expeditor at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., Henry has won five professional International Federation of Body Building titles and was crowned Mr. Olympia in 2008 in the under
  • RESCUE LESSONS LEARNED

    In all drowning events, medical personnel must be consulted, even if it appears the victim is OK. Secondary drowning can occur even when the victim is immediately resuscitated with no apparent problems. According to the American College of Emergency Physicians, you only need to inhale four ounces of water to drown and even less to injure the
  • A NARROW ESCAPE - Powered parachutist nearly drowns after crashing into ocean

    When a powered parachute driver crashed into the Gulf of Mexico 200 yards from shore, his craft landed upside down, trapping him under water. It took us more than five minutes to reach him. We found him still submerged, buckled in his harness and entangled in his lines.Our hearts raced from the exertion of fighting the waves and from the knowledge
  • OFF BY A DIGIT - Major severs ring finger during mission in Rwanda

    Maj. Sang Kim rang in the New Year in atypical fashion ... by losing part of his ring finger.On New Year's Day 2009, Kim, a C-17 Globemaster III pilot, flew from his home station at Travis Air Force Base, Calif., to Ramstein Air Base, Germany, en route to Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda in eastern-central Africa. He and his crew had been tasked
  • UNDER A GUNMAN'S GAZE - HOW ONE SERGEANT TURNED INTO THE ULTIMATE WINGMAN AFTER FACING A DERANGED KILLER

    On April 20, a 22-year-old man with a history of violence walked into a bookstore in Wichita Falls, Texas, and started shooting. He wounded four women, then drove to a bar and killed an employee outside before he drove home and took his own life.This tragedy sounds like so many we hear about on the news each and every night. We've almost become
  • NOT by the BOOK - Faced with a unique landing gear malfunction, a C-130J crew had to get innovative to return home safely

    "... Arrow 96, wind 240 at 11, cleared to land." "Roger, cleared to land, Arrow 96. ... Alright guys, this is it. If the gear collapses, I'll do what I can to keep it on the runway. 'Co,' if the plane starts to settle, feather the props as soon as you feel it lean. If that happens, once the aircraft stops, everybody get out as quickly as you can --
  • STREET SMARTS - How I survived the past 40 years on a motorcycle

    A few years back, I was riding a Triumph Trident motorcycle down a back country road, at night, in the rain, going about 50 to 55 mph. Halfway through a turn, I saw a white, bulky mass in the middle of my lane about 80 feet away. It took a moment for my mind to register what it was ... a large mattress!Initially, I froze.With little time to react,
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