Memorial services were held for the four airmen killed last week in an air crash in Afghanistan at Beale Air Force Base.
They were flying an MC-12 reconnaissance plane based at Beale. About 1,500 people attended the event which was held in a hangar fronted by planes from the squadron.
Capt. Brandon Cyr from Scott Air Force Base in Illinois and Staff Sgt. Daniel Fannin from Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma were praised for their bravery. But services has special meaning for the two airmen who were based at Beale, Capt. Reid Nishizuka and Staff Sgt. Richard Dickson who is a native of nearby Rancho Cordova.
Major General Robert Otto, Commander of the Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Agency said the men did not die in vain.
“U.S. soldiers and marine lives no question are alive today because of their efforts,” said Otto.
Capt. Nishizuka was described as a fun-loving colleague who was also a consummate professional who flew over 200 combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Staff Sgt. Dickson’s friends say he was a talented technician who loved his family and was a role model.
In attendance were Capt. Nishizuka’s family and Staff Sgt. Dickson’s family including his wife and infant child.
The two airmen were awarded the bronze star for heroism at the memorial service. Capt. Cyr and Staff Sgt. Fannin were previously awarded the same medal. The cause of the crash is still being investigated.