DM held Combat Rescue Officer Phase II Screener

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Kristine Legate
  • 355th Wing Public Affairs

When service members are injured and isolated behind enemy lines, their life depends on a swift and effective rescue. Highly trained and equipped with the necessary skills, U.S. Air Force Combat Rescue Officers fill an important role in the rescue community as subject matter experts to provide rapid response in any environment, at home or downrange.

CROs plan, coordinate, manage and execute Personnel Recovery operations, in times of danger or extreme duress, at war and in peace.

DM recently held the CRO Phase II Screener for the first time, October 2021, where 16 members from various Air Force career fields, both officers and enlisted, and cadets from multiple Reserve Officers’ Training Corps Detachments, the U.S. Air Force Academy and the U.S. Military Academy West Point.

CRO Phase II Screeners are conducted twice a year, in spring and fall, and there is a specific application process to apply.

The overall process focuses on more than just physical attributes, it tests one’s determination and mental tolerances.

“This screening process is something unique to CRO community,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. David Reifenberg, 68th Rescue Squadron assistant director of operations. “We need to ensure our future CROs are physically strong, exceptional leaders who can problem solve and possess a critical set of attributes. It may seem like a lot, but we need leaders for the future fight who thrive in environments defined by volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity.”

Do you have what it takes to be a CRO? More information available at: