Meet the Members of Bravo Element 506th Rescue Wing
“Here’s the vomitous mass on PJs (just kidding)
Pararescue Technicians (PJs) are the United States Air Force’s elite, “jack-of-all-trades” in the medical rescue arena. Not only are they highly-trained medical personnel, capable of dealing with a broad spectrum of life-threatening injuries, but their methods of arriving “on scene” are straight from takes in a James Bond movie. Diving from high-flying aircraft, rappelling from helicopters, paddling to shore in rubber boats, underwater (SCUBA) arrivals, or jumping dunes with four-wheel ATVs in the black of night, are all de rigueur for their combat mission of rescuing Air Force pilots (that’s right……..they exist for ME!) downed behind enemy lines!
Yet these same skills are invaluable in a host of other missions ranging from support of Special Operations teams on missions deep behind enemy lines, to providing first-responder support for astronauts in the event of a Space Shuttle mishap, to assisting the injured and lost, stranded in vast wilderness tracts far beyond the reach of most civilian rescue forces.
In short, they’re tough, they’re lean, they have an attitude. But if you need them, you’ll put up with the attitude and buy all the beers at the bar.
William W. LeRoy,
Demigod of the Skies Above Alaska……”
Simpliciter Paratus (Absolutely Ready) THE 506th RESCUE SQUAD
PJ’s, Air Force parajumpers are the elite special forces unit called “Seals with stethoscopes.” All are paramedics. All are highly trained warriors. These guys are equally at home in the water, on a sheer rock face or jumping from a chopper behind enemy lines. Not well known, but very well trained.
Instead of me introducing the guys, I’ll let them introduce each other.
Meet Bravo Element
|Colonel Rick McIntyre(Commander of Bravo Team)||Nickname: “Scarecrow”
Hometown: Minneapolis, MN
The Colonel? Good guy. Pretty loose. I like that in a commander. But he’d go to the wall for us. I think he’d like to be able to socialize more with us. He doesn’t take his rank really seriously, at least not with us – unless we fuck up big time. I’ve seen him angry – twice – I stayed out of his way. His biggest fault? Bad jokes? He’ll talk your head off about fishing. He and Joey liked to talk fishing. Me? Not so much.
|Lieutenant David Quillen||Nickname?: “Yoda”
Hometown: Bend, OR
David Quillen is the most steady, hard-working man I’ve ever met. I watched him struggle with the decision to go to OTS. He was a superb leader as a Sergeant. Even better as an officer. But I think he sometimes misses the relationship with the teams that he gave up. It’s unusual for a guy to leave the unit, go to OTS, and return to the same unit. I pulled some strings. David’s biggest fault? He doesn’t get my jokes.
by Rick McIntyre
|Nic D’Onofrio||Nickname: “Batman”
Hometown: Boston, MA
Batman? Good man. Steady. Friendly. Open. He’s the kind of guy that can sell you on any adventure. He’ll have all the details planned out and make it sound like the most exciting thing you’ve ever done. Course most of these guys have done almost everything. So when Nic comes up with something new, it’s sporty. His biggest fault is that he pouts when he doesn’t get to go on a mission. He also gets frustrated with his teammates when they go off half-cocked. He doesn’t balance those things all that well. But he’ll never quit on me. He’ll get the job done, no matter what. The guy lives to rescue.
by Lt. David Quillen
|Eric Cruz||Nickname: “Hollywood”
Hometown: Beverly Hills, CA
Cruz? Seriously? Well, he flaunts convention, that’s for sure. But he seems to get away with it. If I did the shit he does, I’d have been in jail a long time ago. He’s good at not getting caught, I guess. Nic says he’s a juvie in an adult body. But there’s no one, except maybe for Nic, that I’d rather have in my corner. He die before he let you down. And there’s that thing with women? What’s that about? He can do anything with a computer. But the way he does it – embarrassing. His greatest fault? Not only does he do nothing by the book, I think he never even READ the book.
by Chris Gabriel
|Chris Gabriel||Nickname: “Angel”
Hometown: Boynton Beach, FL
Chris Gabriel. We call him Angel. He’s um, very easy going, always cheerful. Actually, that’s not true. He’s mostly cheerful. When he goes into a funk, he really goes into a funk. Stay the hell away from him. It takes a while for him to get to even ground again. It doesn’t happen often. Gabe is a by-the-book kinda guy. I think he invented the book. Did you know he’s a former Navy JAGoff-icer? If you need legal advice, he’s your guy. If you need an alibi – not. Cruz is your man for that one. His greatest fault is he greatest strength I guess – his belief in right and wrong, black and white, truth, justice and the American way. Hoo-yah.
by Matt Wiley
|Will Pitkin||Nickname: “Clancy”
Hometown: McCook, NE
I guess I was selected to introduce Will because we both like to read or something. I don’t know him all that well but he seems like a good PJ. He’s outgoing. The teams call him Clancy. I’m told that’s because he’s writing a blockbuster novel. I don’t read much fiction. I watched Will do CPR in the back of a pickup truck for almost an hour. Usually you take turns between squeezing the bag and doing chest compressions. The person doing compressions usually need frequent breaks – it’s exhausting. But Will never faltered. His biggest fault? I don’t think I know him that well. Sorry.
by Daniel Fraser
|Matt Wiley||Nickname: “Cowboy”
Hometown: Froze Creek, CO
The kid? He’s from BFE, Colorado. He wears a cowboy hat. He looks like he just graduated from high school. But, damned if he isn’t good at what he does. He had one strike against him when he came to Bravo team – but he didn’t let us hold that against him for long. He kinda worms his way into your good graces and before you know it, he’s right there in the midst of everything. His biggest fault? He says y’all. And he’s not even Southern. Oh, and he owes me eighty bucks.
by Will Pitkin
|Daniel Fraser (Captain, Yosemite Search and Rescue, Forest Ranger)||Hometown: Taos, NM
Daniel Fraser. The Professor. I guess they call him that because he wears glasses and reads a lot. He’s very good at what he does, but he doesn’t say much. I’ve always thought he was better with a few tequilla shots in him. His men seem to respect him. And his climbing skills rival any of ours. Did you know he’s a former SEAL? Heard that through the grapevine, he’s never talked about it. Daniel’s biggest fault? I don’t know. He runs missions the same way I do, great planning. He doesn’t fly off the handle or make unnecessary snap decisions. I guess maybe he’s just too standoffish for my liking. Oh, and never call him Danny.
by Nic D’Onofrio