Thomas A. Newman | Air Force Cross
Citation to accompany the award of the Air Force Cross to Sergeant Thomas A. Newman.
The President of the United States of America, authorized by Title 10, Section 8742, United States Code, awards the Air Force Cross to Sergeant Thomas A. Newman for extraordinary heroism in military operations against an opposing armed force as a Pararescueman on a HH-3E Rescue Helicopter in Southeast Asia, on 30 May 1968. On that date, Sergeant Newman voluntarily descended into a hostile jungle environment to rescue a downed Air Force pilot. With complete disregard for his own life, and hampered by darkness and concentrated automatic weapons fire, he requested the rescue helicopter above him to enter a nearby orbit, both for the safety of the crewmembers, and to prevent the hovering aircraft from establishing the survivor’s location for the unfriendly ground forces. When the rescue helicopter returned, he secured the injured airman to the forest penetrator and protected him with his own body as they ascended to the helicopter. Through his extraordinary heroism, superb airmanship, and aggressiveness in the face of the enemy, Sergeant Newman reflected the highest credit upon himself and the United States Air Force.