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Pararescuemen, also called PJs, are the United States Air Force Elite Special Operations Command (AFSOC) and Air Combat Command (ACC) operatives tasked with recovery and medical treatment of personnel in humanitarian and combat environments. They are the only members of the DoD specifically organized, trained and equipped to conduct personnel recovery operations in hostile or denied areas as a primary mission. PJs are also used to support NASA missions and have been used to recover astronauts after water landings. They wear the maroon beret, as a symbol of their elite status. Part of the little-known Air Force Special Tactics community and long an enlisted preserve, the pararescue service began commissioning Combat Rescue Officers (CROs) early in the 21st century.

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