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Articles by Air Force Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm

First female takes command as AFMES director

Article
2/28/2020
Air Force Lt. Col. Alice Briones, Armed Forces Medical Examiner System deputy director, has been named director of AFMES, effective February 21, 2020, making Briones the first female director. U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Ronald Place, Defense Health Agency director, selected Briones after she served as deputy director of AFMES since April 2017.

Briones enlisted in the U.S. Army as a Combat Medic in 1990

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Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

CBD oil off limits for service members

Article
1/23/2020
A service member checks the label on a supplement. Service members must remain diligent and check labels on consumer products and follow official guidance on CBD products. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

The use of CBD products is prohibited for use by service members

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Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Substance Abuse

DoD adds fentanyl to drug testing panel

Article
11/22/2019
An Airman from the 436th Air Wing inspects a bottle before being asked to provide a urine sample November 8, 2019. The DoD has a zero tolerance policy for the illegal or improper use of drugs by service members. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Fentanyl is an opioid, similar to heroin

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Substance Abuse | Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

Colony Glacier: Joint team unearths lost service members

Article
7/17/2019
Recovery team members traverse Colony Glacier, Alaska, June 2019. The recovery team was searching for remains from a C-124 Globemaster II that crashed into Gannett Mountain, Alaska, on Nov. 22, 1952, while flying from McChord Air Force Base, Washington, to Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska resulting in the loss of 52 service members. (Courtesy photo)

This is part one of a two-part series on the Colony Glacier recovery efforts

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Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

AFMES Joint MWD Lab ensures DoD kennels are meeting the standard

Article
7/8/2019
Air Force Staff Sgt. Vivian Johnson, AFMES Joint MWD Laboratory NCO in charge (left), discusses the upcoming Military Working Dog kennel inspection schedule with Army Staff Sgt. Joseph Tutt, AFMES Joint MWD laboratory manager (center), and Navy Lt. Ken Lindsay, AFMES Joint MWD Laboratory chief, June 7, 2019. Johnson and Tutt conduct random inspections each month to ensure training aids for the MWDs are being handled correctly and those handling them have the proper authorization. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Site visits provide an excellent opportunity to educate MWD sites

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Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

Histology: Where art and science merge

Article
6/13/2019
Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Tyler Wiedmeyer, Armed Forces Medical Examiner System histotechnichian, looks at slides of tissues under a microscope before handing them off to a medical examiner June 6, 2019. The stained tissues help medical examiners see down to the cellular level for a diagnosis of cause of death. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Without a histotechnician, tissue processing would take much longer to be completed

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Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

Dignity, reverence, respect: The mortuary affairs specialist

Article
4/18/2019
Army Cpl. Daveson Tamanyon, 54th Quartermaster Company mortuary affairs specialist, lays out a U.S. Army uniform during a training exercise at the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System, Dover Air Force Base, Delaware. Soldiers in this career field perform duties related to deceased personnel, including searching for fallen and missing service members, helping to disinter remains and assist in the preparation and preservation of remains. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Soldiers in this career field perform duties related to deceased personnel

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AFMES, DPAA shares missions with service members, families

Article
2/6/2019
Todd Livick, Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency Outreach and Communications director, speaks to U.S. Army Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape instructors about the DPAA mission at the U.S. Army S.E.R.E. school, Fort Rucker, Alabama. The DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System provided information on their respective missions and held question and answer session with the Soldiers to provide a better understanding about the two agencies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

They’re all here for the same reason; to bring their loved one home

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Positive identification is assured

Article
11/21/2018
Air Force Tech. Sgt. Ricky Penuelaz, 59th Medical Wing lab technician, uses a pipette to put blood on an Air Force trainee’s DNA card. The Armed Forces Medical Examiner System-Armed Forces Repository of Specimen Samples of the Identification of Remains inspected Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, on the collection of DNA cards. AFMES-AFRSSIR is responsible for managing, coordinating and maintaining the collection of DNA blood reference cards for all active duty, reserve, and National Guard service members. This is done when service members first enter the military and is collected at one of nine basic training sites, dependent on their branch of service. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

The goal of the DNA cards is to never have an ‘unknown soldier’ or unknown military member ever again

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AFMES participates in 'Safe and Sound' week

Article
8/27/2018
Air Force Tech Sgt. Aisuluu Alford (left) and Army Staff Sgt. Joseph Tutt, both Armed Forces Medical Examiner System forensic toxicology laboratory technicians, grab supplies out of the Shelter-In-Place Kit during a Shelter-In-Place exercise. The exercise was part of Safe and Sound week where AFMES personnel were able to engage in different safety activities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Safe and Sound Week is a nationwide campaign to raise awareness and understanding of safety and health programs within the workplace

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Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

AFMES DoD DNA Lab receives perfect score

Article
8/6/2018
Sean Patterson, quality management section DNA analyst, checks expiration dates on reagents in the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System – Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory. AFDIL recently underwent a quality assessment where they received zero findings of nonconformance for the first time. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

This was the first time AFDIL has received zero findings during a quality assessment

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Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner
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