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Lt. Col. Edward Cook Receives Bronze Star

Lt. Col. Edward Cook (left), Commander, 174th Fighter Wing Logistics Readiness Squadron, is presented the Bronze Star medal by 174th Fighter Wing Commander Col. Greg Semmel, during a ceremony held on 31 March 2012 at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, Syracuse, NY.  Cook received the Bronze Star for exceptionally meritorious service as the Director of Joint Logistics, Combined Forces Special Operations Component Command, while deployed to Afghanistan from August 2011-Feb 2012. (NY Air National Guard Photo by: Staff Sgt. James N. Faso II, Released)

Lt. Col. Edward Cook (left), Commander, 174th Fighter Wing Logistics Readiness Squadron, is presented the Bronze Star medal by 174th Fighter Wing Commander Col. Greg Semmel, during a ceremony held on 31 March 2012 at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, Syracuse, NY. Cook received the Bronze Star for exceptionally meritorious service as the Director of Joint Logistics, Combined Forces Special Operations Component Command, while deployed to Afghanistan from August 2011-Feb 2012. (NY Air National Guard Photo by: Staff Sgt. James N. Faso II, Released)

Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, Syracuse, NY -- On March 31, 2012, Lt. Col. Edward W. Cook Jr., Commander of the 174th Fighter Wing Logistics Readiness Squadron (LRS), received the Bronze Star medal during a ceremony held at Hancock Field as family and Hancock Field unit members looked on.

"It's good to be back home. I 'm eager to get back to work", said Lt. Col. Cook during the ceremony. He recently returned from his seventh overseas deployment, the most recent being to Afghanistan where he served as Director of Joint Logistics, Combined Forces Special Operations Component Command in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

While deployed, Lt. Col. Cook worked closely with the Afghan National Army and the Afghan Local Police. "It was definitely a unique experience working with the Afghans. You are working with guys who have lives and stories similar to your own," reflected Lt. Col. Cook. He helped enhance local village stability operations by equipping locals to defend themselves against insurgent threats. By the time Lt. Col. Cook left Afghanistan, there were 11,000 Afghan Local Police troops trained, an increase of over 4,000 during the time he was deployed.

When asked if he was surprised by receiving the Bronze Star, Lt. Col. Cook responded "I was surprised. Because everything was so fast paced, I never had time to sit back and think about what had been accomplished. I was more concerned about what needed to be done next."

The Bronze Star Medal, authorized by Presidential Executive Order No. 9419 on February 4, 1944, is awarded to a person in any branch of the military service who, while serving in the Armed Forces of the United States on or after December 7, 1941, distinguishes himself by heroic or meritorious achievement or service in connection with military operations against an armed enemy.