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Maj. Willie Holt Jr., 18th Component Maintenance Squadron commander, left, pins a Bronze Star on Chief Master Sgt. Terrence Frost, superintendent of the 18th CMS.
Maj. Willie Holt Jr., 18th Component Maintenance Squadron commander, left, pins a Bronze Star on Chief Master Sgt. Terrence Frost, superintendent of the 18th CMS. (Mark Rankin / S&S)

KADENA AIR BASE, Okinawa — A 20-year Air Force veteran was presented the Bronze Star during a commander’s call here Thursday.

Chief Master Sgt. Terrence Frost, superintendent of the 18th Component Maintenance Squadron, was recognized for his work setting up an airlift hub at a classified location during Operation Enduring Freedom. Frost deployed for 23 days from Travis Air Force Base, Calif., shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks in the United States.

Frost deployed as the senior noncommissioned officer in charge of the 615th Air Mobility Operations Group tanker airlift control element from Oct. 4 to Dec. 19, 2001. While in a position of authority at the airfield, he ensured safe support activities as more than 31.5 million pounds of cargo, and 5,000 passengers moved with a 99.4 percent reliability rate.

“There were trying times,” said the Warner Robbins, Ga., native. “We started a bare base, didn’t have the comforts of home, and didn’t know when we were actually going home.”

He also acted as the deployed first sergeant, leading the junior troops.

He said he kept the troops motivated by not complaining about the torrential rains and tough conditions.

“Things had to change for better, and they did,” Frost stated.

Frost said he had mixed emotions when he learned he was receiving the medal.

“It is definitely humbling to be considered and put in for it,” he said. “I didn’t look for an award; I just did what I was trained to do.”

Maj. Willie Holt Jr., 18th CMS commander, called Frost “a visionary” in an Air Force news release.

“I’ve got five or six chiefs working for me, and he’s the best. It’s one of those things as a commander you see; when I bring something to the table that we need to do, he’s already working it,” Holt stated in the release.

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