Kansas Air Guardsman receives medal for community heroism


Maj. Gen. Lee Tafanelli, adjutant general, Kansas National Guard, presents Master Sgt. Josh Manning, information technology specialist, 177th Information Aggressor Squadron, with the certificate for the Airman’s Medal during a ceremony at McConnell Air Force Base, July 20. Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Jacob Lewis)

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNW) – A Kansas Air Guardsman received an award for heroism after risking his life to help another.

Master Sgt. Joshua Manning, information technology specialist, 177th Information Aggressor Squadron, received the Airman’s Medal on July 20, 2019.

On April 23, 2017, an intoxicated driver’s tire exploded and caught fire in Wichita. Manning and another bystander rushed to the driver’s aid. They attempted to pull the driver out of the vehicle but, the driver resisted. Manning and the bystander were able to forcibly enter the burning vehicle, pull out the driver and drag him to safety.

“We all have those moments where it’s go or no go, and sometimes you don’t have time to think,” said Manning. “You either act or don’t act, and I am fortunate that it all turned out well and no lives were lost.”

“It is ordinary people doing extraordinary things,” said Maj. Gen. Lee E. Tafanelli, adjutant general, Kansas National Guard. “And on that day Technical Sergeant Manning had several choices he could have made. Several choices that no one would have faulted, but the choice he made was one that lead him to spring into action and risk his own life to save another individual.”

The Airman’s Medal was established in 1960 to recognize heroic actions in a non-combat situation or setting.

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