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Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base in Montgomery County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

Award of Air Force Cross to Joel E. Talley

 
 
Award of Air Force Cross to Joel E. Talley Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, June 23, 2016
1. Award of Air Force Cross to Joel E. Talley Marker
Inscription.
Citation to Accompany the Award of
The Air Force Cross
to

Joel E. Talley

Airman First Class Joel E. Talley distinguished himself by extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an opposing armed force as a Rescue Specialist on a HH-3E Rescue Helicopter in Southeast Asia on 2 July 1968. On that date, Airman Talley volunteered to be lowered to the ground from a hovering helicopter into the jungle of North Vietnam to rescue an injured pilot, who had ejected the previous day. The downed pilot had parachuted into a concentration of North Vietnamese Army regulars who immediately surrounded him and set up gun positions to trap the forthcoming rescue helicopters. Four rescue attempts were driven off and a supporting fighter aircraft was shot down by the devastating ground fire which encircled the survivorís position. Despite full knowledge of the well laid trap Airman Talley voluntarily descended to search the jungle floor. After an extensive search he found the helpless survivor, carried him to the rescue device, and signaled the helicopter to commence extraction. While Airman Talley and the survivor were being hoisted, a fusillade of fire raked the helicopter scoring more than forty hits, forcing the helicopter to exit the area, exposing both
Wide view of AF Cross memorial plaques. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, June 23, 2016
2. Wide view of AF Cross memorial plaques.
airmen to hostile fire. The rescue was successfully accomplished. Through his extraordinary heroism, superb airmanship, and aggressiveness in the face of the enemy, Airman Talley reflected the highest credit upon himself and the United States Air Force.
 
Location. 32° 24.257′ N, 86° 14.972′ W. Marker is in Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base, Alabama, in Montgomery County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of McDonald Street and Avenue D. Touch for map. Located at the USAF Senior NCO Academy on Gunter AFB and requires base access. Marker is at or near this postal address: 550 McDonald Street, Montgomery AL 36114, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Award of Air Force Cross to Charles D. King (here, next to this marker); Award of Air Force Cross to Victor R. Adams (here, next to this marker); Award of Air Force Cross to Nacey Kent Jr (here, next to this marker); Award of Air Force Cross to Thomas A. Newman (here, next to this marker); Award of Air Force Cross to Michael E. Fish (here, next to this marker); Award of Air Force Cross to Donald G. Smith (here, next to this marker); Award of Air Force Cross to Richard L. Etchberger
CMSgt Joel E. Talley image. Click for full size.
By USAF Photo
3. CMSgt Joel E. Talley
(here, next to this marker); Award of Air Force Cross to Dennis M. Richardson (here, next to this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base.
 
Regarding Award of Air Force Cross to Joel E. Talley. On July 2, 1968, A1C Joel E. Talley, a
37th ARRS pararescueman, entered the jungle at Dong Hoi, North Vietnam, to rescue an injured F-105 pilot. The pilot had landed in the midst of enemy forces that had immediately established gun positions to ensnare rescue helicopters. Three rescue attempts were thwarted, and a supporting attack aircraft was shot down. Finally, chopper Jolly Green 21 was able to penetrate the area and lowered Talley, who had to conduct an extensive search to locate the injured pilot. The PJ determined the pilot had a broken pelvis and decided he would have to direct the helicopter to their location. As soon as he strapped the pilot on the forest penetrator and gave the radio
signal to hoist away, enemy fire erupted again. When Talley and the pilot cleared the treetops, the chopper departed the area with him and the pilot dangling, then slowly brought them aboard the aircraft.
 
Categories. HeroesWar, Vietnam
 
Enlisted Air Force Cross Description image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, June 23, 2016
4. Enlisted Air Force Cross Description

The AF Cross is awarded for extraordinary heroism against an armed enemy, to any person while serving with the U.S. Air Force, while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing enemy force, or while serving with friendly foreign forces, engaged in conflict against an opposing force in which the United States is not a belligerent party. It is awarded for heroic actions second in precedence only to the Medal of Honor and is presented in the name of the President. It was established by Congress by Public Law 88-593 on 6 July 1960.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 29, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 28, 2016, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 188 times since then and 74 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on June 28, 2016, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.
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