Sinema-Backed Bill Awards Congressional Gold Medal to Helicopter Ambulance Crews of the Vietnam War

Jan 25, 2024

Bipartisan bill honors ‘Dustoff’ Crews of the Vietnam War for evacuating sick and wounded Americans

WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema cosponsored the Dustoff crews of the Vietnam War Congressional Gold Medal Act – bipartisan legislation awarding a Congressional Gold Medal to the helicopter air ambulance crews, known as the “Dustoff” crews, of the Vietnam War.

“We’re honoring the men and women who risked everything to save American lives and protect our freedoms,” said Sinema, a member of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee.

Dustoff crews include the pilots, crew chiefs, and medics who served aboard helicopter air ambulances with call sign “Dustoff” during the Vietnam War from May 1962 through March 1973. 

Despite the dangerous odds, Dustoff crews were responsible for evacuating nearly 900,000 sick and wounded servicemembers and civilians from the battlefield. 

Arizona consistently ranks among the states with the highest percentages of veteran populations.