Airlifter of the Week: 786th CES, EOD Operations NCOIC

Story and photo by
Airman 1st Class Ariel Leighty
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Ricardo B. Porto, 786th Civil Engineer Squadron explosive ordnance disposal non-commissioned officer in charge, left, receives recognition from Col. Joseph Wenckus, 86th Airlift Wing vice commander, on Ramstein Air Base, Dec. 20, 2018. Porto received the honor of Airlifter of the week for his work with the Department of State for Albanian and Kosovan Humanitarian Mine Actions missions.

A 786th Civil Engineer Squadron noncommissioned officer received the honor of being Ramstein’s Airlifter of the Week Dec. 20, 2018.

The 86th Airlift Wing vice commander and command chief lauded Staff Sgt. Ricardo B. Porto, 786th CES explosive ordnance disposal NCO in charge, for his excellence in executing the Air Force’s mission across the European theater of operation.

Porto, a Puerto Rico native, is credited with working with the Department of State for Albanian and Kosovan Humanitarian Mine Actions missions. Porto led a five-man team through six weeks of instruction, executing EUCOM’s first-ever level-two course, certifying 23 students from both partner nations. His team’s professional instruction was recognized by the Albanian Ministry of Defense.

Additionally, Porto was handpicked to attend the Overseas Humanitarian Disaster Assistance and Civic Aid Conference in Batumi, Georgia, as Ramstein’s EOD representative to EUCOM.

Porto expressed gratitude to his teammates: Tech. Sgt. Aaron Carroll, Staff Sgts. Fernando Aguilera and Geoffrey Hagle, and Senior Airman Gregg Donley.

“I’m blessed to have been able to be a part of the missions and to be a part of this team,” said Porto. “We jumped right into the course, and it really showed what an amazing team we could be when we come together.