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50th EARS member’s swift action saves life

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Michael Battles
  • 379th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs

In recognition for an act heroism, a member of the 50th Expeditionary Refueling Squadron was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal during an award presentation ceremony, Oct. 20, 2020, Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar.

Master Sgt. Michael Fulton, 50th EARS chief boom operator, was awarded the medal for actions that resulted in saving the life of a member of Al Udeid.

On Aug. 17, 2020, Fulton was working out at the base gym when he witnessed an individual collapse, face-down, losing consciousness. Due to his prior training as an emergency medical technician, Fulton rushed to the individual, provided medical care and stabilized the member until first responders could arrive.

“It’s unexpected to receive a medal for what any other medic would have done without hesitation,” Fulton said. “I’m honored that the 50th EARS and 379th [Expeditionary Operations Group] wanted to capture this effort in a decoration. Truly thankful and happy the member didn’t sustain any further injuries.”

As an emergency technician, Fulton is trained in clinical and acute care, family medicine and aeromedical evacuation.

According to Senior Master Sgt. Kenneth Harwood, 50th EARS superintendent, Fulton instinctively reacted to help the individual because that’s just the type of person he is.

“I was there with him when this all happened and the extraordinary part of all this to me was watching him calmly take control of the situation and begin administering aid,” he said. “Mike has a big heart and is always looking to help people in need. He brings a lot of energy to the squadron.”

He went on to say this is just one of the main reasons Fulton is respected in the unit.

“Master sergeant Fulton has natural leadership ability, and his charisma and humor, combined with his professionalism are what make the Airmen look up to him,” Harwood said. “This has been an amazing year for our squadron, and Fulton’s leadership and guidance for the younger Airmen has been critical to getting us to where we are today.”

Lt. Col. Menola Guthrie, 50th EARS commander, explained their unit is proud to have him.

“The Red Devils are extremely fortunate to have an individual with such a unique background and skill set matched with an approachable and friendly demeanor,” she said. “He’s been hitting it out of the park at home station, and in the deployed environment he hasn’t missed a beat.”

Fulton is currently deployed to Al Udeid Air Base as part of the first mass unit deployment of the 50th Air Refueling Squadron from MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.