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Air Force Major Lunning Distinguished Flying Cross Medal


Air Force Major Katie Lunning will be presented with the nation’s highest award for aerial achievement, the Distinguished Flying Cross Medal, Saturday in St. Paul for extraordinary achievement while participating in an aerial flight during the evacuation of Kabul in August 2021.


According to the Minnesota National Guard, Lunning, who grew up in Hastings, is the first Air National Guard flight nurse in the country to receive this prestigious award.


Under small-arms fire and imminent threat of attack at HKIA, Major Lunning performed patient triage and intake for 22 patients before they embarked on their eight-hour aeromedical evacuation flight to Landstuhl, Germany.


Lunning’s professional competence and aerial skill ensured all 22 patients survived.


Major is a member of the St. Paul-based 133rd Airlift Wing.

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