Six-year-old Muhamed Mehmedovic spent much of his childhood escaping through the Bosnian woods with his father and other men during the 1995 war there. His hometown of Srebrenica was destroyed, as genocide was committed against the Muslim population.
“Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘I am going to rain bread from heaven for you, and each day the people shall go out and gather enough for that day. In that way I will test them, whether they will follow my instruction or not.” —Exodus 16:4
Muhamed explained, “The United States helped us by providing air drops of food, supplies, and medical equipment constantly for three years. Ultimately, their actions saved my life. Eight-thousand people died, just in my town.”
“I originally wanted to be a pilot.” he said, “They gave so much to my family. I feel like I owe that to the U.S.”
Muhamed and surviving family members were finally able to get to the U.S. through a sponsorship program. “I graduated from high school in May. I signed the [commitment] papers in June. I told my parents in July and I left in October,” he said.
So today, Senior Airman Muhamed Mehmedovic, a 19th Logistics Readiness Squadron air transportation journeyman, has completed four years in the Air Force.
“The circle is being completed,” he said. “This is where I want to be. I joined as air transportation. One of the biggest aerial delivery squadrons is here. This is where all the riggers receive their training on how to properly put the parachutes on, rig the food, and put it on aircraft for it to be dropped in a specific location.” Just as was done for Muhamed as a child.
The United States’ humanitarian commitment to Bosnia passed on a spirit of service and commitment to Muhamed that will be returned with a lifetime of loyalty.
The circle is complete.
MERCIFUL GOD, help me to remember every statistic has a name and every victim had a life. Help me to be professional, yet keep my service personal, because it certainly is to You.