Tulsa Air National Guard Airman receives Purple Heart
By Senior Master Sgt. Preston L. Chasteen, 138th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
/ Published September 10, 2014
Tulsa Okla. -- Tech. Sgt. Kody Jorgensen, of the 138th Logistics Readiness Squadron, received the Purple Heart during a ceremony at Tulsa Air National Guard Base on Sept. 6.
Jorgensen was awarded the medal for injuries he sustained in Afghanistan while serving with the Georgia National Guard's 265th Regional Support Group, Agri-Business Development Team II (ADT) in 2012.
"I can tell anyone, without a doubt, that anytime one of our AG folks walked into a village, you could see the people's faces light up, because they knew we were there to help them, and for no other reason," said Army Brig. Gen. Craig M. McGalliard, Assistant Adjutant General - Army, Georgia National Guard, who was Jorgensen's commander at the time of the deployment. "We were in two of the most dangerous provinces in Afghanistan while we were there, and we went into a lot of places that other people couldn't get into. That's a testament to the Georgia AG Team II, and nobody played a bigger role in that than Kody Jorgensen."
ADT Team II was responsible for conducting operations in several Afghan provinces where they endured numerous attacks. In June of 2012, Jorgensen experienced a blast from a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) which detonated only 6 meters from his position. Later that same day, he endured an additional blast within 20 meters.
A few months later, on Aug. 27, 2012, a blast from an incoming shell hit a bunker wall only 10 feet from Jorgensen's position. He was taken to a forward-operating base for treatment, and then transferred to Bagram Airfield for further evaluation.
"It says something special about the men and women who wear the uniform when you're willing to go into harm's way, not to go looking for the bad guys, but basically to improve the quality of life for people who have so little to begin with," said McGalliard.
His wife, Quatie, daughter, Kuwayah, and numerous other family members attended the ceremony, along with several members of ADT Team II who made the trip from Georgia to share in Jorgensen's special day of recognition.
"Today, to me, is really about recognition," said Quatie Jorgensen. "His injury is a brain injury, and you can't see that, though he's fighting it on the inside. Just to be recognized for that and have the support and love of our family, I think it's really great for the both of us, to kind of give us hope to keep pushing forward to work through his injury."
"Just to see everybody here, it means a great deal to me," said Sergeant Jorgensen. "I'm so glad to receive the honor, just to hopefully show what I did, and my commitment. So today is a good day."