National Police Week honors security forces Airmen
By Airman 1st Class JaNae Capuno, 366th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
/ Published May 23, 2018
MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho (AFNS) -- His Sunday started like any other in Spring 2018. Following his routine, he stopped by the base kennels to feed his K-9 counterpart then departed Mountain Home Air Force Base to the I-84.
While driving to Boise, Idaho, the Airman noticed a horrific scene when pulling up to a weigh station.
Senior Airman Kenan Kulasevic, 366th Security Forces Squadron military working dog handler, witnessed a rolled over vehicle with people gathering around the area.
“He looked like he was stuck in there, and nobody was making an attempt to move him,” Kulasevic said. “I told two other people that we should make an attempt to move him out of the vehicle.”
Working carefully, Kulasevic and two other bystanders transferred the victim out of the wreckage to an open space.
Kulasevic promptly began CPR on the victim.
“After about four or five sets of compressions, I noticed his pulse was getting stronger and that his breathing had a normal pattern to it,” Kulasevic said. “It was still rather weak, but stronger than when we found him. That’s when the ambulance finally arrived.”
Kulasevic is one of many Air Force defenders who rush to protect when emergencies strike.
With a history that predates the inception of the Air Force, security forces Airmen uphold a legacy of Defensor Fortis, or “Defenders of the Force”, and it’s an idea that permeates the essence of law enforcement across the nation.
That’s why this Police Week, May 13-19, 2018, has been set aside to honor those who serve and have served as police officers, including the Gunfighters at Mountain Home AFB.
“Police Week was first established in 1962 when Former United States President John F. Kennedy signed a proclamation designating 15 May as Peace Officers Memorial Day,” said Master Sgt. Zachary Simpson, 366th SFS logistics superintendent. “National Police Week pays special tribute to those law enforcement officers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty for the safety and protection of others.”
National Police Week didn’t just celebrate current defenders of the force. Throughout the week, several events were held to honor the 14 defenders who’ve lost their lives to protect the nation.
One of the main events was a memorial ruck march, where 71 SFS Airmen rucked night and day for 96 hours and approximately 300 miles over the course of the week. Other events included a memorial workout, combat golf tournament and a Defender Led Challenge.
“We started the Defender Challenge quarterly, where all of Security Forces on this base get together and compete in a ruck march, gas mask run, humvee push, fireman’s carry and a low crawl race,” said Staff Sgt. RioStasia Johns, 366th SFS standardization evaluator. “We thought it would be a good idea for National Police Week to get other agencies to come out here and compete in this Defender Led Challenge just like we do.”
The week ended with a final guard mount in remembrance of the law enforcement who have lost their lives in the line of duty and the 14 defenders who have fallen since 9/11.
“It wasn’t always the steady tempo it is today,” Kulasevic said. “The mid 2000s were very busy and people that have been in since that time will tell you that. I think our generation is enjoying the steady pace we currently have because of what the fallen gave up for us.”
Paying respect to current officers and defenders like Kulasevic and honoring the fallen is the essence that makes National Police Week a celebration for not only law enforcement, but the entire nation.