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Two Air Cav healthcare providers receive top awards

Email   Print   Share By Capt. Matt McMillan, 1st ACB, 1st Cav. Div. Public Affairs
May 29, 2014 | News
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Maj. Massimo Federico (left), 1st ACB, 1st Cav. Div. surgeon; and Maj. Ronnie Holmes (right), brigade aeromedical physician assistant for the 1st ACB, both with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, gather for a photo at Troop Medical Clinic 12, Hood Army Airfield, Fort Hood on May 16. Photo by Staff Sgt. Christopher Calvert, 1st ACB, 1st Cav. Div. Public Affairs
Two Air Cavalry officers received high honors from the Society of U.S. Army Flight Surgeons May 12 in recognition of their service to the Soldiers of their brigade.

Maj. Massimo Federico, brigade surgeon; and Maj. Ronnie Holmes, brigade aeromedical physician assistant, both with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, each received the society’s annual Outstanding Achievement Award.

Federico gave credit to his unit and Soldiers.

“I think it’s a reflection on the command team, the healthcare providers here and the Soldiers of the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade,” Frederico said. “It’s a reflection on getting to serve in a great unit.”

The society is dedicated to the professional advancement of aerospace medicine and its practitioners, according to its website. Federico and Holmes received two of five Outstanding Achievement awards for 2013.

“Getting this award – what I’m most proud of is getting to work with Major Holmes on a daily basis,” Federico said. “He’s been in the Army for 24 years … I’ve benefitted from his experience and compassion.”

Maj. Josh Worley, physician assistant for 3rd Assault Helicopter Battalion, 1st ACB, works with Federico and Holmes daily.

“The biggest thing with both of them that I’ve noticed is that they have an exceptional ability to balance the mission requirements of the Air Cav. with the individual needs of the patients,” he said. “Basically, they have a really, really good sense of balance between their staff officer jobs and their medical provider roles.”

“They really are like the quarterback and coach – they have a good sense of being able to work together, and they are able to use the resources in the clinic,” Worley said.

Federico again emphasized the role of service members and the unit itself in Holmes’ and his recent honor.

“(Our primary job is) making sure that the brigade and battalion command teams are getting the healthcare and health service support that they need to take care of their Soldiers,” he said. “They (commanders) set us up, as healthcare providers, for success by trusting us to take care of their Soldiers.”

Ironically, Federico and Holmes were informed of their awards not in a ceremony but in a much more mundane way – an email. The society bestowed their awards in absentia; the proceedings were in San Diego, California, with notifications to award recipients afterward.

However, that does not lessen the impact.

“We’re certainly happy to see us here, as a medical team, be recognized,” Federico said. “It’s really a reflection on how great they (the Soldiers) are doing.”
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