RAF MILDENHALL, England — A pilot and sergeant with the 352nd Special Operations Group have been honored for their efforts in the ongoing global war on terror.
Maj. Jason Hanover, a MC-130H Combat Talon II pilot with the 352nd Operations Support Squadron, was named the winner of the 2004 Col. James Jabara Award for Airmanship for his efforts during operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.
The award is named for Col. James Jabara, America’s first jet ace, and is given annually to an Air Force Academy graduate whose actions set him or her apart from others.
Hanover graduated from the academy in 1992.
Hanover took part in the effort to oust the Taliban in Afghanistan following the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks on America. He logged more than 229 hours and dropped 265,000 pounds of warfighting equipment at 18 different drop zones throughout Afghanistan.
He led a two-ship formation through an 18-hour, 3,860-mile mission, overcoming enemy anti-aircraft artillery attacks, to save the lives of a 12-man special operations force engaged by advancing Taliban.
On March 22, 2003, Hanover flew a low-level combat infiltration mission against enemy fire to establish a forward-staging base for special operations forces strikes in northern Iraq.
Tech Sgt. Robert Jeeves, a combat controller with the 321st Special Tactics Squadron, was named the Air Force Special Operations Command NCO of the Year for 2003.
Jeeves, who spent 12 years in the Marine Corps before joining the Air Force in 1998, conducted more than 600 close air support missions in northern Iraq.
He kept lines of communications open to the troops on the ground and the aircraft in the air, maintaining contact with leadership about events happening on the ground.
His efforts led to the early defeat of two Iraqi divisions.