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Bronze Star Medal with Valor Recipient

TSgt Jeff Kinlaw

Operation Enduring Freedom

April 12, 2012
Nuristan, Afghanistan

Award: Bronze Star Medal with Valor


Achievement: Heroism during ground operations against the enemy in Nuristan Province.


Notable Act: Battled Taliban fighters for 14 hours on April 12, 2012, serving as the primary Joint Terminal Attack Controller for a combined United States Special Forces team and an Afghanistan Commando unit.


Tech. Sgt. Jeff Kinlaw, earned a Bronze Star Medal with Valor for heroism while engaged in ground operations against the enemy near Kamdesh Village, Nuristan Province, from April 11 to 16, 2012.


On April 12, while serving as the primary Joint Terminal Attack Controller for a combined United States Special Forces team and an Afghanistan Commando unit, Kinlaw battled Taliban fighters for 14 hours. 


“On this day, a highly motivated enemy initiated a coordinated assault with small arms, medium machine gun and sniper fire,” the citation said. Kinlaw voluntarily and continuously placed himself in plain sight of the enemy to protect the lives of his teammates. When the Taliban advance initiated, he surrendered his protected position and bounded through open terrain to support a pinned-down element in dire need of help. 


“During the heaviest volleys of enemy fire, Sergeant Kinlaw low-crawled to unprotected areas in order to ensure the supporting aircraft could successfully identify and engage well-hidden insurgent fighting positions,” the citation said. 


“Using his hand-held laser marker, he coordinated multiple air-to-ground attacks on strongholds within 100 meters of his position. “Later during the enemy advance, while continuing to control air strikes, he again surrendered cover and went into the direct line of enemy fire to locate a suitable helicopter landing zone to evacuate the wounded in action. 


Sergeant Kinlaw remained exposed until the extraction was complete.” During the 14-hour attack, Kinlaw successfully engaged seven enemy fighting positions and three Taliban-dominated structures, killed 18 insurgents and weakened the adversary’s advance.

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