An officer and a gentleman

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Eboni Reams
  • 39th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
The greatest wing you'll ever be a part of...A close knit supportive community." These key elements to the 39th Air Base Wing vision statement were brought to life Aug. 7, when a dependent spouse and mother made use of social media to thank a stranger who had come to the aid of her son following a potentially horrific bicycle accident on base.

This was not a regular 'squeezed the brakes a little too hard' crash. Danny Vaughn, III, son of Master Sgt. Danny Vaughn, 39th Force Support Squadron Airman Leadership School commandant, was riding his bicycle in the Turkish morning sun when the handle bars abruptly disconnected from his bike causing him to crash, skin his knee and take a hard tumble to the ground.

"My first thought as I was falling, was 'Oh man! I'm not going to make it!'" said Danny, III.

Seconds later a neighbor, Capt. Michael Floyd, 39th Force Support Squadron, manpower and personnel flight commander, also biking, stopped and jogged over to help him.

"Ouch! That hurt," said Danny, III.

"Are you okay?" asked Floyd.

"I'm good," said Danny, III.

Obviously, his biking adventures were done for the day but with his bike broken in pieces, the question of how Danny, III would get home hung in the air.

Floyd didn't miss a beat, he called a base taxi for Danny, III, and loaded the boy's bike parts and broken pieces into the trunk. His generosity didn't stop there, he made sure to pay for the taxi as well when Danny, III told him he had no money, to guarantee a stress-free ride home for the injured young man.

Although embodying the mission to support and protect people throughout Turkey and leading by example of being a good wingman, Floyd chalked it up to personal experience.

"When I was his age, I know the first thing I wanted to do after crashing my bike was go home and get taken care of by my mom." said Floyd.

The two bike riders shared a laugh about how the mandatory helmet rule on base isn't so bad after all, and said goodbye until they'd meet again.

When Danny, III arrived home he shared the story of the unknown man who went out of his way to help him with his mother, Stephanie Vaughn.

"I was shocked someone stopped to help me," said Danny, III. "It was really nice."

Stephanie was touched by the kind gesture and used Facebook to find the man who made her and her son's day to thank him.

Incirlik has adapted to the social media world and has many pages on the social networking sites used to stay connected and get information. 'Incirlik 411' for example, is a page for questions and posting information on base activities and events.

Mrs. Vaughn posted a 'thank you' on Incirlik 411 to the person who helped her son after his crash, got him home safely and asked that they let her know who they were.

Thanks and gratefulness for the kindness of the Incirlik AB community came in the form of 'likes' and comments on the post. In minutes, the word made its way to Floyd who then identified himself.

"No problem," said Floyd. "Your son took it like a champ, jumped right back up like a boss!"

Danny explained how impressed and appreciative his son was with Floyd's actions.

"I wasn't there when it happened, but from talking to my son, he thinks Capt. Floyd is a pretty cool guy," said Danny. "My son values people for their kindness, so I know Capt. Floyd earned hero status in my son's eyes."

According to the Vaughn family and Floyd, this behavior is the culture of the Incirlik AB community and they have both experienced other acts of kindness and generosity from others since their arrival.

This small kind gesture shows how a little can go a long way in any community. Floyd called his help common sense and decency, Danny, III called him his hero.