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Navigator, Logistics Officer Receive Cheney Award
by USAF Staff Sgt. Richard A. Williams Jr. - October 31, 2011

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Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley presents the Lt. William Cheney Award to Maj. John D. Foy IV during a ceremony at the Pentagon Oct. 27, 2011. U.S. Air Force photo by Andy Morataya
Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley presents the Lt. William Cheney Award to Maj. John D. Foy IV during a ceremony at the Pentagon Oct. 27, 2011. U.S. Air Force photo by Andy Morataya

Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley presents the Lt. William Cheney Award to Capt. Patrick R. Markey during a ceremony at the Pentagon Oct. 27, 2011. U.S. Air Force photo by Andy Morataya
Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley presents the Lt. William Cheney Award to Capt. Patrick R. Markey during a ceremony at the Pentagon Oct. 27, 2011. U.S. Air Force photo by Andy Morataya

 ARLINGTON, Va. (AFNS - 10/27/2011) -- Two Airmen received the Cheney Award from Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley here Oct. 27 in recognition of their efforts to support Pakistan flood relief operations in 2010.

Maj. John Foy, a C-130E/H Hercules navigator, and Capt. Patrick Markey, a logistics readiness officer; both assigned to the 819th Global Support Squadron at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J.; served as directors of operations for the 621st Contingency Response Element when the unit deployed to Chaklala Air Base, Pakistan, from Aug. 28 to Oct. 21, 2010.

Foy and Markey led a 36-member team that provided humanitarian support during one of the largest natural disasters in Pakistan's history. The 2010 floods there affected some 20 million people.

"We are certainly proud of your accomplishments as well as the incredible capability of the 621st and the rest of your team along the way," Donley said. "Your efforts last year helped countless people who were in desperate need and showed the people of Pakistan and the rest of the world America's compassion and generosity."

The Cheney Award honors an act of valor, extreme fortitude or self-sacrifice in a humanitarian interest, performed in connection with aircraft, but not necessarily of a military nature, by an officer or enlisted Airman.

According to their award nomination, Foy and Markey were handpicked as operations directors and had their team ready to depart within 12 hours. Upon arrival in Pakistan, they aided in transport of supplies, equipment and personnel to forward distribution centers.

Their efforts to craft a local pallet recovery plan resulted in the recycling of more than 350 pallets for future operations. This assisted aerial porters under their direction to teach their Pakistani counterparts proper pallet building and cargo netting procedures, which reduced pallet build times. During their six weeks supporting the humanitarian operation, more than 7.5 million pounds of cargo and more than 1,800 personnel were transported on 290 flights throughout the flood-affected area.

It was a truly collaborative effort from top to bottom, Foy said. He credited the success of their mission to strong support from their leaders and the Airmen working with them.

"We could not have done this without the support of the men and women of the 621st," Foy said. "(They) are the hardest working individuals I have ever worked with."

His colleague and award co-recipient agreed.

"It was really a team effort," Mackey said. "We stand here today for all of those who really did the mission and accept this award on behalf of them."

By USAF Staff Sgt. Richard A. Williams Jr.
Air Force Public Affairs Agency
Air Force News Service
Copyright 2011

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