RONCO Zlatan Simeunovic named WSI Field Employee of the Year
Zlatan “Goldie” Simeunovic, RONCO Consulting Senior Medic, has been named WSI Field Employee of the Year for his exceptional bravery in the line of duty.
Goldie Simeunovic was born in the Bosnia region of Yugoslavia in a small town called Tuzla. During the Bosnian Wars, Goldie joined the Bosnian Special Police Force where he trained as a medic. After enduring the hardships of this conflict, including the abduction and safe recovery of his family, Goldie joined RONCO in 1996 as a field medic working with demining teams throughout the Balkan region.
In 2002, Goldie went with RONCO to Afghanistan where he worked throughout the country. In 2005, he was able to finish his EMT training through Texas University at the Bagram Air Field and was quickly promoted to Senior Medic. In this capacity, he supervises the training of new medics, deminers, and dog handlers as well as managing the health care of all RONCO employees on the base, drug/disease testing, and all other medical coordination.
And it was in that role of Senior Medic that the events of May 19, 2010 found him. On this day, the Bagram Airfield came under heavy insurgent attack. Numerous Taliban attempted to breach the perimeter fence of Bagram and in response a mixed force of American troops unknowingly pursued the insurgents through a Russian anti-personnel mine field. 1LT Robert Withers was one of the pursuers. Shortly after exiting the wire, he stepped on a mine and suffered severe injuries to his left leg, left arm, and groin.
As the cry for a medic rang out, Goldie, without hesitation or fear for his own well-being, climbed over the fence and rushed to the aid 1LT Withers. With a firefight happening around him, Goldie unwaveringly entered a known minefield and provided 1LT Withers with immediate lifesaving medical treatment. With total disregard for his own safety, Goldie got 1LT Withers stabilized, on a back board, and back onto the base with no time to spare. Without his immediate action, 1LT Withers would have bled out in the field. Upon his arrival to the field hospital, doctors commented that 1LT Withers had received the best field care they had ever seen.
The fact that Robert Withers is alive today is a direct result of the actions of Goldie Simeunovic and it because of his heroic actions in the field that he is being recognized as WSI Field Employee of the Year.
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