Three Special Operations airmen receive Sijan award for leadership

Published: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at 10:57 AM.

Like Green, Keaton, who characterizes himself as a really down-to-earth guy, said he is also humbled to be selected for the Sijan award.

Keaton credits the special tactics career field for emphasizing the importance of getting the job done and encouraging airmen to test their limitations, like Sijan was called to do.

To Keaton, leadership means taking care of your people.

“The most critical part of any project you work on are the people,” he said.

The Lance P. Sijan USAF leadership award bears the namesake of the Medal of Honor recipient who was shot down in his F-4C Phantom fighter jet over Vietnam in 1967.

For 45 days, Sijan evaded enemy forces, and when he was captured and tortured, he refused to divulge any information beyond what is permissible by the Geneva Conventions until he died in the Hanoi Hilton, January 1968.

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