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Be a leader ... on and off duty

PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- The American people look to the military for many things to include ensuring our nation's security, preserving our way of life, as well as to serve as a model of integrity, serve and excellence. We've highlighted the actions of many in the Missileer during deployment or performing their duties here on station.

However, it's nice every so often to point out the actions of those helping a stranger.

Maj. Michael Coyle, 45th Operations Support Squadron, Airfield Operations Flight Commander, was driving on his way to the Orlando airport last Friday when he arrived at the scene of a three-vehicle accident in the oncoming lanes of State Route 528. He stopped immediately when he saw no emergency responders had arrived yet, and rendered aid to the most seriously injured, a man and woman in one of the cars. The man was trapped in the passenger seat, and Major Coyle opened a rear door with a crowbar and aided him and the woman until emergency personnel arrived on scene.

Coincidentally, Major Coyle had just completed Self Aid Buddy Care refresher training two days before the accident. He was in uniform, and we're told others on scene looked to him for direction. My guess is that wasn't an accident.

The American people put more trust in their military than in any other public institution, and Major Coyle's actions and those of other servicemembers in times of crises serve as a true reminder of why we have that public trust.

Let's all be aware of the needs in our local community, whether in a crisis or simply the day-to-day events of life, so that we can lend a hand and be a good neighbor.

As always, thank you for all you do.