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Dyess tech sergeant awarded Bronze Star, Pitbull of the Month award in Afghanistan
Tech. Sgt. Sharma Haynes, 7th Comptroller Squadron, was awarded the first Pitbull of the Month award as well as a Bronze Star for her tour of duty.
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Dyess tech sergeant awarded Bronze Star, Pitbull of the Month award in Afghanistan

Posted 4/2/2012   Updated 4/2/2012 Email story   Print story

    


by Navy Reserve Lt. Cmdr. Kip Wright Special

4/2/2012 - SOUTHWEST ASIA, Afghanistan  -- When a person thinks about U.S. military special operations, thoughts of spreadsheets, calculators or budgets may not come to mind. But those are the tools an Abilene service member uses in her special operations assignment -- skills that helped her win two military honors.

Air Force Tech. Sgt. Sharma Haynes, stationed at Dyess Air Force Base with the 7th Comptroller Squadron, recently returned from a tour of duty in Afghanistan, where she served as a budget analyst for Combined Forces Special Operations Component Command-Afghanistan and balanced the books for special operations forces.

"That was my first experience in a special operations environment, so I didn't really know what to expect," Haynes said.

She successfully met the challenges and was awarded a Bronze Star. She also was the first recipient of the Pitbull of the Month award from the command.

"I nominated Tech. Sgt. Haynes for the Pitbull award because of the commandwide impact she made on a daily basis and her absolute tenacity in solving problems top to bottom," said her supervisor, Air Force Capt. Anthony George.

Using her skills as a financial technical expert, she tackled pay issues for service members and made sure special operations troops on the ground had the funds they needed for mission success.

"She fought through long days and expended every ounce of her expertise to develop the financial processes for the command," George said. "She sought no personal benefit from her hard work, but she knew that she could improve the situation for special operations troops and the Afghan local police they partner with."

Haynes said an additional challenge she faced was "coming into a staff position where 95 percent of my co-workers outranked me."

That didn't hold her back.

"Among a field of senior noncommissioned officers and high-ranking officers in a high-paced environment, she showed that her ability to positively impact the mission far exceeded her rank and years of experience," George said.

Reflecting on her tour in Afghanistan, Haynes said, "My time in Afghanistan was busy at all times, but time well spent -- I know when most people see the news and read the papers, the majority of what they see are the bad things that occur here, but the U.S. presence is making a positive impact on this country."

Navy Reserve Lt. Cmdr. Kip Wright is a public affairs officer for U.S. Forces-Afghanistan.



tabComments
4/6/2012 10:16:13 AM ET
It is amazing the harsh criticism extolled here about a troop because of an award she won. Especially from those who have no idea what the criteria for the award are and what she did while she was deployed to EARN it. All you see is that she is a finance troop and therefore not worthy of such an award. I guess only certain AFSCs deserve to be recognized for their actions in a combat zone. THE APPROPRIATE AWARD FOR MERITORIOUS SERVICE IN A COMBAT ZONE IS THE BRONZE STAR. NOT THE MSM. Her award was given to her by her ARMY leadership whom she worked for. I am sure they knew what they were doing and therefore did what all good supervisors do.TAKE CARE OF THEIR TROOPS.
PROUD OF HER, Dyess AFB
 
4/5/2012 5:06:37 PM ET
This isn't Bronze Star material. This is httpwww.aetc.af.milnewsstory.aspid123296582
Phil, Las Vegas NV
 
4/5/2012 4:23:11 PM ET
What is leadership saying about this obviously nothing.....this is sick. But got to give mad props to her supervisor he must be a great writer
JTrefurt's, Guam
 
4/5/2012 4:18:32 PM ET
Wow once again we are destroying the award system how many security force members even get a medal on a deployment and this person a desk jockey a bsm. The corporation is out of control I endured 504 rockets not mortars and almost got whacked 4 times on my 365 imbedded with Iraqis and live with PTSD. And was proud of my BSM when I received it after seeing this I might melt it down to a a make a pen out of it since that's how people get medals ....soldier up
Jtrefurt, Guam
 
4/5/2012 4:06:04 PM ET
Is this what re-bluing the force is all about Gen Schwartz cannot be proud of the direction the AF has taken under his managership I blame everyone from the top down for letting stuff like this happen. Boooo Hisssss
Retired , Florida
 
4/5/2012 3:59:26 PM ET
You're kidding me..againwhat a slap in the face to all the maintainers and folks working outside the wire 2x as hard and 2x as long.Didn't know going into a staff position was a challenge guess all Amn and A1C's going into a new shop should get a MSM at least cause its a challeneger being the lowest on the totem pole...gimme a break
Minot, Minot
 
4/5/2012 3:41:48 PM ET
Why is she wearing a Flame Retardant Uniform if she doesn't go outside the wire I all ready commented on her Medal.
FLAME RETARDANT UNIFORMFINANCE TROOP, Ramstein AB GE
 
4/5/2012 2:56:54 PM ET
I will share what I learned recently while being mad about the previous finance BSM awarded.The appropriate award for meritorious service in a combat zone is the Bronze Star. Not the MSM. So if her service was meritorious and it occurred in Afghanistan she got the correct award.The anger we see is because people are mistaking the Bronze Star with the Bronze Star with Valor. The V device means outside the wire heroism bravery courage etc. Without the V it is just an MSM but in a combat zone. Hope this helps a little...
Recently Educated, Earth
 
4/5/2012 2:56:33 PM ET
Seriously the AF recognition system has gone to hell. Where did I miss the part where the individual deserved this decoration If you work 8hrs a day in the AC you should immediately realize you have the easiest job in the AF. As a Fighter Aircraft Dedicated Crew Chief I will continue to work my 12 hr shifts and bust my behind yet I will never receive any recognition of this kind for just doing my job and neither should anyone else. If you have any dignity or respect for people who actually earn this decoration you would return the decoration and understand you did nothing to deserve it.
Sean, Japan
 
4/5/2012 2:49:00 PM ET
What an embarrassment. This is a slap in the face to everyone that has truly EARNED this medal. These people should be ashamed of themselves. It's truly sickening that there are people whose lives are put on the line in real combat every day that get no more than a big F.U. at the end of the day and yet these pencil pushers who probably can't even define the term combat are given such a high honor. They should be ashamed to wear this uniform.
Jason, Hawaii
 
4/5/2012 2:28:35 PM ET
Great article about how blah blah blah happened in the AoR. Bold print Special operations tiny print finance and then zero mention of actions completed to deserve a bronze star. I'm entirely unsure about what this medal represents anymore.
Great article, United States
 
4/5/2012 2:19:11 PM ET
My Bronze Star was awarded with a V device for valor in combat. Was hers given with a device After all She fought through long days and expended every ounce of her expertise to develop the financial processes for the command. So I didn't have to get shot at after all
Greg, NC
 
4/5/2012 2:16:55 PM ET
I think the point has been made. Great she is a professional and does her job well. She deserves a 5 on her EPR and maybe an MSM depending on the circumstances. Whoopee.This is yet another example of good supervision. Someone took the time to write a well written medal for their troop and it went through likely due to a lack of knowledge and AF protocol on the part of the approving official. Too bad 99 percent of AF supervisors could care less about the people they supervise.The fact that the medal is completely unjustified and unwarranted is irrelevant. She has it she has the points and she'll probably make rank faster that someone who worked a lot harder and suffered significantly more injustices and poor treatment from their supervision..... even if they were one of the ones that was actually shot at. Obviously that doesn't matter.Its the new AF way.... the me me me generation has taken over and the power of the pen combined with rampant incompetence an
18year TSgt, Anywhere
 
4/5/2012 2:07:04 PM ET
A Bronze star really We have soldiers who are serving their country for over 20 years and are denied a Meritorious Service Medals but TWO finance specialists receiving Bronze Stars This is acceptable how What a GREAT way to cheapen our merit system. Where's the Inspector General Beyond ridiculous.
Cecilia, United States
 
4/5/2012 1:37:26 PM ET
Some damn O-6 should be demoted for that. How about an MSM if she did such a great job. Thanks US military for sending the morale of those that risk their lives to be rewarded with a commendation medal down the drain once again. You should be ashamed.- Signed someone getting an MSM for performing wartime OTW ops and still feeling like I'm not worthy
Joe, Afghanistan
 
4/5/2012 1:32:08 PM ET
Wowww is all I got to say. I agree mostly with what everyone else wrote. But it is not her fault leadership FAILED and gave her a Medal way higher than what she has earned. LEADERSHIP FAILED All I got to say.
The Hunt, Ramstein AB GE
 
4/5/2012 1:25:24 PM ET
I know people that recieved the award after being KIA. Worked with E-1s through E-4s with over 300 combat missions in the course of a 365 deployment that recieved either an AFAM or NOTHING. Sad news.
Dusty, Ok
 
4/5/2012 1:13:17 PM ET
She got the Bronze Star for doing a great job at her desk This is what the Achievement Medal is for. Whats next giving the Medal of Honor to her boss for writing the package The Air Force is trying stare away from the Chair Force mentality and here we are giving Bronze Stars away like candy while some Army person with one arm is contemplating turning into the Hulk and smashing the room heshe is in after reading this. I bet every Chief of Staff is laughing their butts off at the Air Force Chief of Staff and SECAF. Air Force image ruined.
Paul, N.C.
 
4/5/2012 1:12:07 PM ET
After 26 deployments over 15 yrs to include 44 O-1 combat sorties to include 10 night combat sorties during the 2003 OIF campaign all I got was an Air Medal. Eventually I received an MSM when I retired. I was told I could not use those missions towards promotion because that's your job and what you're supposed to do Obviously flying the USAF's primary mission isn't good enough. I blame the so-called leadership and the system here.
Retired, CA USA
 
4/5/2012 12:25:45 PM ET
I am sorry but I think this is just wrong. Good on her for doing her job and stepping up but was she involved on combat bravery or was there heroism This is the second BSM I have seen just given to someone for nothing. I she excelled at her job then she should have earned a MSM. I hope AF leadership is listening. And shame on the person for allowing this. The part where a person can recognize single acts of merit or meritorious service needs to be removed unless it coinsides with an act of bravery or heroism. What I see when I read this article is someone who did her job and excelled at it. Yes it was meritorious hence a MSM. But I see nothing to warrent the achievement of our 4th highest award This is what is wrong with AF leadership. To allow this make me ashamed of the AF. No wonder the other branches we serve with think we are a big joke. Congrats again and every time you look at your medal please think of all those individuals that have fought in combat saved a life
a proud Air Force Veteran, Texas
 
4/5/2012 10:25:36 AM ET
The Bronze Star is a combat award for courage under fire not for sitting in an air-conditioned office crunching numbers. This has diminished EVERY Bronze Star ever given for combat. I have no doubt that the sergeant is outstanding at what she does. That is what the Meritorious Service Medal is for.
David Brawner, US
 
4/5/2012 8:40:22 AM ET
And people wonder why maintainers have such hatred towards noners
Jeff, Kunsan
 
4/5/2012 8:34:33 AM ET
i did not realize that being a CPA in a war zone was soooooo dangerous. this is a true slap in the face to troops that face DIRECT combat on a daily basis.was a field promotion not possible epic fail.
chester robbins , virginia beachva
 
4/5/2012 8:33:21 AM ET
YOU GAVE HER A BRONZE STAR FOR FIXING PAY ISSUES WHICH IS HER JOB TO BEGIN WITHThanks for making the Bronze Star pretty much useless now... I just cannot FATHOM how anyone would approved this Thanks for fixing the pay problems and an achievement is MAX that she should have received for her contributions...
Robert Murphy, Indiantown Gap PA
 
4/5/2012 7:46:12 AM ET
You're kidding right Aren't there commendation medals for this kind of stuff Awarding the Bronze Star for something like this cheapens the award. Did she also get the Purple Heart for a paper cut
Rudyard, State of disbelief
 
4/5/2012 3:49:17 AM ET
Unbelievable. Another person gets a BSM for doing their job and never leaving the wire. The AF has seriously lost it's focus on decorations and good people that probably deserve them aren't getting them.
Will, NE
 
4/5/2012 1:18:30 AM ET
Are you FREAKING kidding me Another one AF.mil already removed the story about the paper pusher from San Antonio getting this supposedly prestigous medal. And yet we have another one. There is nothing in this article that says she deserves a Bronze Star...NOTHING. This is the type of the thing the MSM is meant for. NOT the Bronze Star
I quit, Las Vegas NV
 
4/4/2012 11:42:14 PM ET
Good to see that finance troops are finally getting the recognition they deserve. Someone should be getting awarded for all those travel vouchers that get messed up I also think it's great news that stellar finance troops will be spared from any future cuts in manning because they are obviously among the brightest and best
that guy, turdy tousand feet
 
4/4/2012 9:46:50 PM ET
Are you kidding me ANOTHER FINANCE SPECIALIST WITH A BRONZE STAR This is getting ridiculous. You were a budget analyst and balanced the books so you got the fourth highest award for heroism valor and meritorious service Meritorious service comes with valor and heroism not necessarily the other way around. Every person in the AOR ultimately supports special operations so you can quit that noise...this is a high impact low density conflict with the majority of the heavy lifting being carried out by SOF. I want to cross train into finance just so my 25 medal points embarrass these pathetic excuses for desk jockeys. These commanders should be ashamed of themselves. Congratulations Air Force you have just degraded a medal that has been awarded for a couple generations to fine individuals who were deserving.
Perturbed SSgt, DM AFB
 
4/4/2012 4:34:57 PM ET
This is getting out of hand. To all those who have gone outside the wire and are going outside the wire wearing 70lbs of gear and return with no more than a thanks for doing your job I'm sorry you have to see people get BSM that dont' deserve them.
Pat, S.Korea
 
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