Fallen Warrior: Staff Sgt. Ray Rangel

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  • By (Courtesy article)
  • 81st Training Wing Public Affairs

For our Fallen Warrior commemoration this week, we remember Staff Sgt. Ray Rangel, fire protection craftsman.

On February 13, 2005, Rangel, from San Antonio‚ Texas, was assigned 50 miles north of Baghdad, Iraq. He was dispatched with other firefighters to a rescue mission for a high-mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicle (HMMWV or Humvee) overturned in a canal with a report of victims inside.

On scene, soldiers watched as Rangel extended his hand to a firefighter and entered the canal’s waters. He was weighed down by the armor plates in his ballistic vest and lost his life. Rangel died doing what he loved to do – helping others in need.

Rangel’s actions reflected the Air Force Fire Protection motto; desire to serve, ability to perform, courage to act.

Editor's note: The Fallen Warrior series highlights Fallen Warriors who exemplify our core values and paid the ultimate sacrifice. Take a moment to honor this week’s hero.