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In January of 2007, Captain Link deployed to Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan where he led a team tasked with standing up the new Craig Joint Theater Military Hospital. Shortly after Captain Link’s arrival, former Vice President Dick Cheney visited Bagram Air Base. During the former Vice President’s visit to Bagram, a suicide bomber attacked the front gate killing 20 personnel and wounded dozens. Captain Link led the initial medical response to the gruesome attack. With complete disregard for his own safety, Captain Link bravely charged into the volatile scene in an effort to save the wounded. He expertly administered medical care to all wounded individuals and ensured prompt evacuation of the critically injured. The heroic actions of Captain Link directly saved the lives of dozens of coalition force personnel and Afghan nationals.
Additionally, Captain Link flew numerous UH-60 medevac missions with the Army’s elite “Dust Off” unit. In March of 2007, Captain Link departed Bagram in a US Army Blackhawk helicopter on a mission to provide medical care for two severely wounded ANA soldiers in response to a mortar attack on a coalition forward operating base, or FOB. During this mission, Captain Link’s UH-60 experienced complete tail rotor failure. The UH-60 crew executed an emergency landing and auto-rotated the helicopter to the ground. The helicopter crash severely injured Captain Link’s back; however, with complete disregard for his own well-being and despite severe neck and back pain, Captain Link quickly treated the injured Blackhawk crew. After ensuring his UH-60 crew was in stable condition, he departed the crash site and ran to a second UH-60 which landed near his downed helicopter. He then continued to the FOB in the second helicopter to medevac the wounded ANA soldiers from his initial mission assignment. Captain Link’s remarkable courage and selfless dedication to the mission at hand directly resulted in the saving of both ANA soldier’s lives.