USAFE JTAC named Outstanding Young American

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jessica Hines
  • U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa
It’s an honor that has been bestowed upon presidents, senators, innovators and entrepreneurs alike who’ve demonstrated remarkable qualities and accomplishments in a young American.

For the 79th anniversary, the United States Junior Chamber organization recognized Senior Master Sgt. Benjamin Garrison during its annual Ten Outstanding Young Americans program event in St. Louis, Missouri.

Garrison, a U.S. Air Forces Europe – Air Forces Africa Tactical Air Control Party functional manager, was honored alongside distinguished recipients such as a former refugee, a senator, CEOs, and other exceptional community servants and volunteers.

“It feels pretty awesome just being associated with the people who are on the list and were on the list in the past,” he said.

The senior master sergeant with 18 years of service to his ledger, was selected in the military service, humanitarian and voluntary leadership categories.

“I was fortunate to attend the 2017 Top Outstanding Young Americans to honor SMSgt Garrison and 9 other incredible people,” said Lee Flint, USAFE-AFAFRICA close air support chief. “While Ben wasn't the only veteran among the honorees, he was the only active duty member and the only person in uniform.

“Ben's comments on service and the importance of leadership in community volunteer organizations really struck a chord with the audience, and made me proud to know him,” added Flint.
Garrison’s military service includes seven combat deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan, where he served as a JTAC, but also used his medical skills to help medics treat local civilians and protect the welfare of their livestock.

The Indiana native has a long history of volunteering starting in high school as a volunteer firefighter, a skill that continued to grow in the Air Force. For over a decade, he’s served as a firefighter and emergency medical technician in local communities while also serving in the military. He is certified as a fire service instructor, incident safety officer and has served as a fire lieutenant at Chena-Goldstream Fire and Rescue in Fairbanks, Alaska. He is currently the director of the Ramstein Ski Patrol that is part of the U.S. National Ski Patrol System. As an outdoor emergency technician instructor, he helps train new ski patrollers to respond to emergency incidents.

“I like to stay busy and helping people is an awesome way to say busy; it’s always interesting to get out and meet new people,” he said.

Garrison is also a frequent contributor to various activities and organizations throughout the Kaiserslautern Military Community. He’s volunteered as a TACP de-briefer for at the Deployment Transition Center, president of the Airmen Leadership School Academic and Disciplinary Review Board, and as an American Heart Association CPR instructor among other volunteer opportunities.