NOVEMBER 20, 2023 — Each year the Armed Services YMCA presents the “Angel of the Battlefield Award” to a heroic enlisted medical professional from each branch of the Armed Services. For 2023, the Army recipient of this award was Staff Sgt. Ta’Quesha Abson, currently at the Medical Readiness Brigade, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
As Abson was driving her car near Fort Liberty, North Carolina, she witnessed a civilian jump from an overpass.
She immediately stopped her car on the side of the road and rushed to the victim. She used the skills she learned as a combat medic and licensed practical nurse to help save his life.
With the assistance of another nurse, she began to triage the patient to identify any potential additional life-threatening injuries.
She noted blood along his back and stabilized his cervical spine to prevent any further injury to the spinal column. Abson kept the patient still and calm until first responders arrived.
During the press event for the awards, Maj. Gen. Michael Place, Chief of Staff and Deputy Commanding General (Support) of the U.S. Army Medical Command, said “Her selfless service, immediate actions, and exceptional medical skills were essential to optimize the clinical outcome of the injured civilian that day. Her dedication to duty is in keeping with the finest traditions of military service.”
Abson gave great credit to her mother, husband, and children for their support and serving as a motivator in pursuit of excellence. “Thank you for never giving up on me,” she said.
She enlisted in the U.S. Army in 2013, and after completion of basic training, she attended advanced individual training (AIT) to be a 68W, combat medic.
In 2019, she returned to complete AIT to change her military occupational specialty to a 68C licensed practical nurse.
Abson currently serves as a phase two practical nurse instructor and tactical combat casualty care instructor at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
Additionally, she is a victim advocate for the Army’s Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) Program and the Navy’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response (SAPR) Program.
Story by Ronald Wolf
U.S. Army Medical Command