by 2nd Lt. Alicia Wallace
45th Space Wing Public Affairs
1/9/2013 - CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- The
first annual Forrest S. McCartney National Defense Space Award was
presented to Maj. Kenneth Holmes, Air Force Special Operations Command
chief of space training, at the National Space Club luncheon Tuesday.
The award and recognizes significant contributions of Department of
Defense personnel on duty in Florida and is newly named for a retired
Air Force lieutenant general and former director of NASA's Kennedy Space
Major Holmes was selected for the award based on his ability to provide
and integrate space capabilities to support in-garrison and deployed
special operations forces world-wide. His contribution during his over
140-day deployment to Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan, as the Special
Tactics Officer Chief and Space Officer In Charge for a Joint Task Force
earned him praise as a leader and a technical expert.
Under his leadership, the JTF was able to support over 19,400 task force
personnel during 384 direct action missions. He was able to
significantly disrupt thousands of hours of enemy lines of
communication, which resulted in 1,471 enemies captured or killed,
including 166 high value individuals. Major Holmes' technical expertise
made possible near real-time updates for task forces that enhanced
planning and execution of missions and resulted in the capture of
targets and significantly restricting enemy movement.
"It is humbling to receive this award," said Major Holmes. "I'm honored
to be able to support those on the ground who risk their lives every
Brig. Gen. Anthony Cotton, 45th Space Wing commander, emphasized the
important role the National Space Club has in recognizing the
individuals who support both the space mission and helping Airmen.
"The National Space Club helps connect us all," said General Cotton, "and recognize the achievements of excellent performers."