In a Moment: Providing rescue aid

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Rhonda Smith
  • 48th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

ROYAL AIR FORCE LAKENHEATH, England – Integrity first, service before self and excellence in all we do, are the foundational principles instilled into all Airmen. They are the core values of what it means to be a member of the U.S. Air Force. On Oct. 28, 2019, two Liberty Wing Airmen exemplified all three core values when they answered the call to action during a routine temporary duty assignment in Gran Canaria, Spain.

Senior Airman Gladiola Hamid, 48th Force Support Squadron unit deployment manager, and Senior Airman Gabrielle Moore, 48th FSS military postal clerk, provided rescue aid to Spanish civilians involved in a three-car collision near the town of Mogán en-route to Gando Air Base.

“There was a lot of smoke and we thought the vehicles were empty at first,” said Moore. “Then we saw a bit of movement in one of the vehicles that was overturned.”

Moore told Hamid what she saw as they drove by and she immediately pulled off the highway. Without hesitation, both Airmen jumped out of their car and ran towards the scene to provide help.

“There was an elderly couple in an overturned vehicle and the gentleman was partially hanging out of the windshield,” said Hamid. “We cautiously pulled him out but we were unable to pull his wife out due to her seatbelt being jammed.”

Hamid, fluent in Spanish, communicated with bystanders to call emergency services.
“The scene was covered in gasoline, glass and blood. We stayed [on scene] until emergency services arrived,” said Hamid.

Hamid stayed beside the elderly gentleman keeping him calm and making sure he stayed responsive, while Moore went from car to car checking every person and ensuring they were okay.

“We were shocked at the number of cars that kept driving by,” said Moore. “Those that did stop stayed in their cars.”

The Airmen stayed with injured personnel until all of them were transported by emergency services.

“We were afraid but I know we would definitely do it again,” said Hamid.

The Air Force’s greatest strength is the Airmen; patriots with strong character, driven by our core values of integrity, service and excellence. Airmen Hamid and Moore showed true courage and bravery, exemplifying what it means to be an American Airman.