Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Air Force Veteran Brad Bradshaw

A graduate of University of Alabama, Brad Bradshaw commissioned into the Air Force through the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. He served 21 years before retiring in 1981 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

His professional military education, with a specialization in navigation, includes Air War College and Industrial War College. He also earned a graduate degree from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh.

Brad served in two combat tours during the Vietnam War as a member of the 44th Air Refueling Squadron. He was a Fire Control Officer and Navigator for the AC-130 and AC-119K gunships and the KC-135 and KC-97 tankers. Brad’s service in the Vietnam War included 135 missions and 550 hours of combat.

In October 1958, the 44th Air Refueling Squadron earned its unofficial nickname, “Conquerors of the North.” On that particular mission they were able to save a B-47 Stratojet and a B-52 Stratofortress by providing air emergency refueling. “The squadron prevented certain disaster for the two bombers.”

Afterwards, Brad served as Squadron Commander at Izmir, Turkey, and Patrick Air Force Base in the Apollo program. He was also part of the Strategic Air Command for five years. For his service, he was awarded four Distinguished Flying Crosses, eight Air Medals and numerous other honors.

Brad currently resides in Virginia with his wife of 54 years, Carolyn. After his retirement from the military, he remains active in community service. He is currently on the board of directors of the Freedom Museum in Virginia whose mission is to honor Veterans.

Thank you for your service, Brad!

Nominate a Veteran for #VeteranOfTheDay

Do you want to light up the face of a special Veteran? Have you been wondering how to tell your Veteran they are special to you? You’re in luck! VA’s #VeteranOfTheDay social media feature is an opportunity to highlight your Veteran and his/her service.

It’s easy to nominate a Veteran. All it takes is an email to with as much of the information as you can put together with some good photos. Visit our blog post about nominating for how to create the best submission.

Graphic By Kierra Willis: Kierra Willis is a Graphic Communication Major at the University of Maryland University College. She currently has an AAS in Graphic Design and Visual Communications.

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Published on Dec. 29, 2016

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