Fallen Warrior: Staff Sgt. Ray Rangel

  • Published
  • By 81st Training Wing Public Affairs

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

Rangel was a native of San Antonio, Texas.

 Rangel enlisted in the U.S. Air Force on September 28, 1994. He was married and had four children before he deployed for the last time in late September 2004.

He was assigned to Logistical Support Area Anaconda, about 50 miles north of Baghdad, Iraq.

Rangel and other firefighters were dispatched to a rescue mission for an overturned Humvee in a canal with report of victims in vehicle. Upon arrival on scene, soldiers watched as Rangel extended his hand to one of the firefighters and then entered the water. He was weighted down by the armor plates in his ballistic vest and lost his life.

Rangel died doing what he loved to do, helping others when they were in need. His actions epitomized 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.