Pararescue Career

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The Distinctive Relationship Among Men from the Pararescue Career Field

Pararescuemen have honored our country in conflict and in humanitarian aid actions around the globe. It is to this brotherhood of USAF Pararescuemen that we organized the Pararescue Association.

The fraternity created by duty, commitment to mission and to the brotherhood is shared by all Pararescue Association Members.  It is the fabric that joins our Association members to a sense of purpose and mission as we collectively serve the Pararescue Community.

Objectives of the Pararescue Association

1.  Preserve the heritage, history and legacy and of the United States Air Force Pararescue Career by strengthening the relationship among all Pararescuemen, past, present, and for those now at the tip of the spear.

2.  Foster camaraderie among those who have earned the title, USAF Pararescueman

3.  Provide an extended community for all Pararescuemen and their families.

4.  Commemorate fittingly, the memory of all Pararescuemen who have given and who risk their lives in the defense of freedom.

5. Encourage and assist in the collection, preservation and protection of historical documents, artifacts, memorabilia, personal accounts and recollections, characterizations of PJ’s, research, incidents, and origins of the USAF Pararescueman.

6. Encourage the continuance of high standards of excellence in leadership training, overall esprit de’ corps, professional competence and equipment for USAF Pararescue Operators.

7.  Engage in any lawful business or activities related thereto, and to engage in any lawful act or activity for which corporations may be organized under the New Mexico Non-Profit Code.



Since the beginning, the Officers and Members of the Pararescue Association

have been committed to establishing and meeting lofty goals. It is our membership that ensures continued support for these goals. Together, at any given time, the Association is capable of meeting the needs of our community.

Pararescue Association Goals are to:

  • Improve PJ Association visibility with a state of the art website
  • Improve social media activity and Association communications to members and supporters
  • Ensure Association financial stability through improved fund raising to meet the needs of the Association to support the membership and the causes that contribute to membership camaraderie, and Association improvements
  • Support the PJ Association and the Pararescue Brotherhood
  • Improve responsiveness to the needs of our Pararescuemen and their families
  • Enhance camaraderie between members
  • Document and preserve USAF Pararescue history and heritage

To achieve these lofty goals, it is essential for all Pararescuemen to join the Association, and to encourage family and friends to join to support the goals and objectives established by the membership of the PJ Association.




Pararescuemen (PJs) are United States Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) and Air Combat Command (ACC) operators tasked with recovery and medical treatment of personnel in humanitarian and combat environments, and have included NASA missions to recover astronaut recovery water landings.

Pararescuemen are attached to other Special Operations Forces teams from all branches of the services, to conduct special operations missions.

Of the roughly 200 Air Force Cross recipients, 24 are from the enlisted ranks, 12 of which are Pararescuemen. Pararescue is a career specialty within the elite, but little-known Air Force Special Operations community.  The Pararescue service, a long enlisted enclave, expanded to include Combat Rescue Officers early in the 21st century.

Saving Lives – That Others May Live

When a an Airman’s life needs saving, the mission falls to Pararescue to bring them home.

As members of Air Force Special Operations, Pararescue (PJ) specialists rescue and recover downed aircrews from hostile or otherwise unreachable areas.

These experts, highly trained to perform recovery and rescue in any terrain, are in every phase of the mission, from search and rescue, to combat support, to providing emergency life saving medical treatment, ensuring that every rescue and humanitarian mission is a successful one.

Training and Education

The transformation from a recruit to a Pararescue Expert is a demanding one.  From hands-on-experience to college credit for a path to degree, the gauntlet begins here.

  • Basic Military Training
  • Indoc Qualification Course
  • Technical Training
  • Tech School Location
  • On Completion
    College credits earned in Personnel Recovery



Qualifications Summary

  • Minimum Education:
    • High School Diploma
    • GED with 15 College Credits, or GED
  • ASVAB Requirement:  General

Entry Level Qualifications

  • Successful completion of the Pararescue physical ability and stamina test
  • Minimum score of 60 on PJ selection model completed in Tailored Adaptive Personality Assessment System
  • Physical qualification for aircrew, parachute and marine-diving duty
  • Qualification and proficiency as a static line and military freefall parachutist and as a military SCUBA diver
  • Certification from the National Registry for Emergency Medical Technicians
  • Completion of a current National Agency Check, Local Agency Checks and Credit
  • Completion of 7.5 weeks of Basic Military Training as well as Airmen’s Week
  • Must be between the ages of 17 and 39

Subjects and Skills

  • Emergency Management & Response
  • Intelligence
  • Special Operations
  • Health and Medicine
  • Health Technician and Specialist

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