Duty First, Always Ready

A new exhibit featuring the story of Tactical Air Control Party (TACP) Senior Airmen Bradley Smith and Michael Malarsie is now on display at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force. On Jan. 3, 2010, Smith and Malarsie were on foot patrol near the village of Badvan with two small fire teams - Alpha and Bravo. Smith assumed a support-by-fire position with the Alpha team. Malarsie with the Bravo team crossed a bridge toward the village. The unit then came under heavy small arms fire and mortar attack. Seconds later, an improvised explosive device (IED) detonated, killing two soldiers. The blast wounded Malarsie in his face and neck, knocking him off the bridge and leaving him incapacitated in a nearby creek. Smith ran through enemy fire to rescue and render aid to his wingman and recover one of the mortally wounded soldiers. After he and the platoon medic stabilized his fellow Airman, Smith continued to defend the position. Despite being badly wounded, Malarsie fought on by handing out his ammunition to those who could return fire. The exhibit is on display in the Cold War Gallery at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.