Patrol Officer Rodney Turner not only serves the citizens of St. Cloud, but also serves the citizens of the United States as a Staff Sergeant with the Air National Guard. Officer Turner was recently awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal for his actions while deployed with the 202nd Red Horse Squadron, which had been activated for Hurricane Irma recovery efforts. The Air Force Commendation Medal is an award for prolonged acts of heroism or meritorious service.

On 11 June 2022, Air Force Leaders presented Officer Turner with his Commendation Medal with his wife and children standing by his side.

Below is a summary of the events which resulted in Officer Turner receiving this prestigious award:

On the morning of 11 September 2017, while en route to their first mission, the group came upon a vehicle attempting to cross a flooded stretch of roadway. Halfway across, the vehicle stalled and began to fill with water. The vehicle and driver were at risk of being swept away by rapidly rising flood waters. Without hesitation, the team jumped into action to rescue the stranded motorist. Using their tractor-trailer, the team’s driver navigated the flood water. Airman Turner and other team members remained on the back of the trailer.

Upon reaching the stranded vehicle and without regard to his safety, Airman Turner waded into the fast-moving water to reach the vehicle and stranded driver. He assisted the elderly driver to the back of the vehicle and carried her to safety. His unique abilities and quick action were key to a smooth rescue. Any delay could have resulted in a worse outcome for all involved. Because of his prompt action and his humanitarian regard for his fellow man, Airman Turner has reflected credit upon himself, the Air National Guard, and the United States Air Force.


St. Cloud Police Department