MEDIA CONTACT: Susan Feinberg
Decorated Air Force Nurse Graduates from FAU’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing
BOCA RATON , FL (May 1, 2007) -When Rocky Hosie was a teenager, he worked as a dishwasher in a long-term health facility in Salt Lake City, Utah. He would spend hours listening to the veterans who lived at the facility tell anecdotes about their lives and their military service. “They made me see that there’s a bigger picture out there,” Hosie recalls. “I knew that I wanted to be part of that picture.”
Throughout his distinguished, 13-year nursing career, Hosie never forgot those veterans. Years later, he joined the United States Air Force (USAF) Nurse Corps. As a member of the Critical Care Air Transport Team (CCAT), he helped to transport critically wounded soldiers serving in Afghanistan and other locations to better equipped health care facilities, earning the Air Force Aerial Achievement Medal for helping to save the lives of 13 men.
Hosie, 34, recently took an educational leave of absence from the Air Force to pursue a dual master’s degree in nursing administration at the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing at Florida Atlantic University, and in business administration from FAU’s Barry Kaye College of Business.
“I decided to earn the advanced nursing degree because I want to make a difference in the world,” said Hosie. “I enjoy leading people and teaching them new things. And I want to be being part of the decision making process that helps nursing to be a better profession.”
With a strong military tradition in his family, Hosie’s interest in that kind of career came naturally. His father was an Army Vietnam Vet, and his grandfather was a Navy corpsman.
As the assistant team leader of the CCAT team, which included a physician and a respiratory technician, it was Hosie’s job to help move critically injured and sick troops from the front lines to larger and more capable military medical facilities. The team operated an intensive care unit in an aircraft cabin during flight and added critical care capability to the U.S. Air Force Aeromedical Evacuation System.
Hosie served two tours for a total of nine months in the Middle East and in Afghanistan before the Iraq war had started. He helped transport a lot of patients who required close monitoring and ventilatory support from Kandahar Airport to a safe hospital.
“We came into Kandahar the night that the marines took it over,” said Hosie. “We were holding that airport and being attacked, so we were at the front of the battlefield when we got there. If injured troops came in, we were prepared to stabilize them and transport them.”
Being on the front lines of a battlefield was unnerving. “There was some gunfire, and there were tracers going back and forth. You’re in an unfamiliar country surrounded by new people. It takes a little time to get used to it and familiarize yourself with the area. But I always felt good that I was there for a worthy cause – taking care of our boys, who were putting their lives on the line.”
Hosie always knew that he wanted to be a nurse. He earned an LPN degree in 1993 and began working as a first-time emergency responder helping injured inmates and prison guards at the Utah State Penitentiary. Hosie went back to school for an associates degree in 1994, moved to Wyoming and became a charge nurse in the forensics unit in Wyoming State Hospital.
After earning a BSN degree in 1998, Hosie worked as a charge nurse in the Burn Trauma Unit at the University of Utah.
After he graduates in May from the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing at Florida Atlantic University, Hosie will be returning to active duty in the Air Force. Although he doesn’t know yet where he will be stationed, he is planning to serve in the Air Force Nurse Corps until he retires.
Florida Atlantic University’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing is committed to nurturing the wholeness of persons and environment through caring.