Medics are just awesome at what they do, much deserved recognition. Best line: “Someone once said the best medicine on the battlefield is fire superiority,”
http://news.soc.mil/releases/News Archive/2010/Feb/100216-04.htmlFORT BENNING, Ga. (USASOC News Service, Feb. 16, 2010) – Braving a hail of automatic gunfire during an intense fire fight, Sgt. Bryan C. Rippee, less than 10 feet away from the tip of the enemy’s weapon, assessed the situation, took charge and rapidly began treatment of the wounded.
The intense close-quarters gunfire exchange between militants and Rangers while clearing the compound had left one Ranger wounded and unresponsive in the center of the room.
With gun fire and grenades continuing to cross the room, Ranger medic Sgt. Rippee exposed himself to enemy fire in order to suppress the enemy. Gaining fire superiority he noticed another Ranger also wounded.
“Someone once said the best medicine on the battlefield is fire superiority,” says Rippee, underplaying the role he played. “As a medic, I am in a position to benefit the force and strive to be able to help in combat both as a medic and a Soldier.”
He began treating the chest wounds while a Ranger assault element moved forward to neutralize the enemy threat with small arms and hand grenades. Rippee used his body to shield the casualty from the explosions and continued treatment.
As an emergency medical technician moved into the room Rippee directed him to assess and treat the severely damaged left arm of a second causality. He continued to direct care and treatment until additional medical personnel arrived.
Cpt. Andrew D. Fisher, 1st Ranger Battalion Physician Assistant, and a man who knows Sgt. Rippee well, had this to say of the Ranger medic that day.
“Recognizing the severity of the wounds, Sgt. Rippee rapidly began his initial assessment and treatment. At the risk of being engaged by the enemy, Sgt. Rippee took the necessary steps to secure and treat the casualty," he said. "I have deployed with Sgt. Rippee on all of his deployments and have witnessed many of his heroic and valorous actions…”
For that day in Iraq, he was awarded the Army Commendation Medal with Valor device.
It was for this type of repeated selfless service and courage that, Rippee , a native of Riverside, Calif. and combat medic assigned to B Company, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment stationed at Hunter Army Airfield, was named the 2009 U.S. Army Special Operations Command Medic of the Year.
The nomination consisted of a two-page recommendation from the combat medic’s supervisors and endorsement from the his chain of command. Eighteen nominee packets were submitted and reviewed by the Command Sergeant Major of U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Command Sgt. Maj. Parry Baer. While all the candidate’s packets were strong, Rippee’s consistent bravery and efforts as a combat medic in multiple actions seemed to set him apart.
He has been with the battalion since August 2007. Throughout his time in the 75th Ranger Regiment, Rippee has proven over and over his mettle as a combat medic both on and off the battlefield.
In the fall of 2009, serving with 1st Ranger Battalion in Afghanistan, while conducting a night time operation, a team of Rangers were critically wounded when they encountered an improvised explosive device. Rippee, who witnessed the event from about 40 meters away, ran into the unsecure blast area without regard for his own safety, and begin treating and conducting triage.
“My first reaction was to run like hell towards the explosion and the Rangers; I knew there would be a lot of casualties,” said Rippee. “I bolted down the road through the smoke and dust and came upon a wounded Ranger and began assessing and treating him. We are trained to treat wounded Rangers by the severity of the wounds, not how bad the wounds look,” said Rippee.
After the casualty collection point was established, Rippee assisted in the movement of the wounded and continued treating the Rangers until medical evacuation arrived.
In that encounter, Rippee, was credited with saving the lives of two of the six wounded.
In another incident during that same rotation, a mid-air collision of two helicopters in route to a target compound instantly turn the assault mission into a combat search and rescue, as the remainder of the force quickly landed at the crash. Rapidly exiting the helicopter he was on, Rippee immediately ran to the burning wreckage.
With ammunition and fuel cooking off around him, and the screams of the injured trapped in the flaming aircraft piercing the night, Rippee and a Ranger squad leader pulled one of the survivors from the burning airframe, carrying him 40 meters then conducting the medical efforts that would save that Soldier’s life.
For Rippee, who doesn’t consider himself a hero, courage seems to be an ingrained trait, apparent to his fellow Rangers and supervisors.
“Sgt. Rippee is a devoted and extraordinary medic. His performance both in training and in combat are the epitome what a United States Army Special Operations Non-commissioned Officer should Be, Know and Do,” said Fisher. “He is an immeasurable asset to our organization. His sense of ethics and discipline is beyond reproach.”
Rippee’s training includes Basic Combat Training, Advanced Individual Training—Combat Medic Course, Basic Airborne Course, Ranger Assessment and Selection Program and Ranger School.
The Combat Medic Course is taught at Fort Sam Houston, Texas and provided Rippee with his EMT-Basic Certification and qualified him as a combat medic.
Following these courses, Rippee attended the Special Operations Combat Medic Course at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. The intensive six month course teaches extensive training in anatomy and physiology, kinetics of trauma, advanced trauma skills and procedures, Trauma Combat Casualty Care and combat trauma management.
He also completed a one month emergency room and EMT rotation at Tampa General Hospital and Tampa Fire and Rescue in Tampa, Fla. Upon graduation, he received a certification as an Advanced Tactical Practitioner.
Rippee has deployed three times in support of the Operations Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom; twice to Iraq and once to Afghanistan.
His awards include the Ranger Tab and Parachutists Badge, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal for Valor, Army Achievement Medal Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and Army Service Ribbon.
Rippee is the son of Antoinette Rippee of Richmond, Va., and Jeffrey Rippee of San Bernardino, Ca.