304th Rescue Squadron Celebrates One of its Own

  • Published
  • By MSgt. Meredith Mingledorff
  • 304th Rescue Squadron

The 304th Rescue Squadron celebrated the promotion of Joshua M. McConkley, director and senior aerospace medicine physician, to the rank of colonel during a ceremony at Portland Air National Guard Base, Oregon, August 4.

McConkley has a long history of service dating back nearly 20 years to his initial commission into the Army National Guard Medical Service Corps in 2000. Since his move to the Air Force Reserve in 2011, he has logged more than 330 flight hours as a flight surgeon, and is credited with saving multiple lives in that time.

The ceremony was officiated by Col. Jonathan Vinson, Commander, 142nd Medical Group at the Portland Air National Guard Base, Ore.

Col. McConkley’s promotion to colonel is a significant accomplishment highlighting his expertise and the level of responsibility entrusted to him by the U.S. Air Force.

“As the senior aerospace medicine physician, Colonel McConkley is responsible for the health and welfare of more than 120 Airmen, some of our nation’s most elite forces. His responsibility is great and the Air Force has promoted him to a rank that is commensurate with that level of commitment,” said Colonel John D. Beatty, commander, 943rd Rescue Group. “Colonel McConkley has had a lot of hard work to do long before wearing the rank of colonel, and did so with Integrity, Service Before Self, and Excellence. This is how promotions are earned, and we are proud of the continued success of our members. I will hold the colonel to even higher standards as a senior official, and expect to see leaders at all levels helping other Airmen achieve their goals as well.”

“The 304th Rescue Squadron has been good to me and I cannot thank my teammates enough for the continued opportunities to serve alongside them,” said McConkley. “This was the first formal pin-on ceremony I’ve ever had and it means a great deal to me. I thank our leaders for the trust, and vow to serve my fellow Airmen with honor and dignity. Thank you.”  

The 304th Rescue Squadron is an Air Force Reserve Command combat-search-and-rescue unit, training its personnel to perform day and night combat rescue missions. The 304th RQS is part of the 943rd Rescue Group at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona and the 920th Rescue Wing at Patrick AFB, Florida.

The 304th trains, equips, and deploys Combat Rescue Officers, Pararescue Jumpers, and support personnel worldwide in the interest of U.S. national security.

More information on the unit is available at www.facebook.com/304RQS