Eleven sailors and a civilian employee at Corpus Christi Naval Air Station (NAS), Texas, were honored for taking action to thwart a gunman. The incident took place on the morning of May 21 at the base’s Ocean Gate, when the armed intruder tried to enter while driving a vehicle. The gunman fired at Master-at-Arms (MA) 2nd Class Yaisa Coburn, striking her bulletproof vest. Coburn responded by activating a denial barrier, returning fire, and radioing comrades for help. Master-at-Arms 3rd Class Levi Milligan, the first to arrive, exposed himself to hostile fire as he entered his chase vehicle. But the barrier stopped the intruder, who jumped out of his vehicle and began shooting at Milligan. Other Naval Security Force (NSF) sailors then arrived on the scene and began drawing fire from the gunman. At that point, Milligan and Coburn were able to subdue the intruder before he was able to gain access to the base or injure anyone.
The other sailors who assisted Coburn and Milligan were MA2 Jamie Moore, MA1 Candace Dickson, MA3 Daniel Wallace, MA2 Lorne Mayfield, MA2 Robert Delgado, MA2 Franko Hunter, and MA2 Gregory Listman. The civilian, Stuart Levitt, is a federal officer.
The ceremony honoring them took place Oct. 8 at the Corpus Christi base. Coburn and Milligan each received the Navy and Marine Corps Medal – the service’s highest honor for heroism unrelated to combat. The other sailors received Navy Commendation Medals. Levitt received the Distinguished Civilian Medal for Valor, the highest honor a civilian can receive for heroism.
“The sailors who first encountered the shooter displayed tremendous courage and took immediate action under fire that allowed Naval Security Forces to respond quickly and effectively,” said Capt. Chris Jason, the commanding officer at NAS Corpus Christi. “They definitely saved lives.”