Wayne Fisk was born in Waldport, Oregon, in 1945. He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force on March 7, 1966, and completed basic training at Lackland AFB, Texas, in May 1966. After completing Rescue and Survival Technician Medical training, Airborne school, Scuba school, Mountain Climbing school, and Pararescue Technician school, Sgt Fisk served as a Pararescue Recovery Specialist with Detachment 2 of the 37th Aerospace Rescue and Recovery Squadron (ARRS) at Udorn Royal Thai AFB, Thailand, from August 1967 to March 1968, and then with the 40th ARRS at Udorn from March to August 1968. His next assignment was as a Pararescue Recovery Specialist with the 55th ARRS at Kindley AFB, Bermuda, from August 1968 to August 1969, and during this time he participated as a recovery member of NASA Apollo missions 8, 9, and 10. Sgt Fisk returned to Southeast Asia in August 1969, serving as a Pararescue Recovery Specialist with the 37th ARRS at Da Nang AB, South Vietnam, from August 1969 to March 1970, followed by service with the 40th ARRS at Udorn and then Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai AFB, Thailand, from March 1970 to March 1972. During this time, SSgt Fisk participated as a pararescueman aboard the HH-53 "Apple Four" on the Son Tay Raid, a clandestine mission to rescue American Prisoners of War held in North Vietnam on November 21, 1970. His next assignment was as a Pararescue Instructor with the U.S. Air Force Pararescue School at Hill AFB, Utah, from March 1972 to October 1974, followed by service as a Pararescue Recovery Specialist with the 40th ARRS at Nakhon Phanom and then Korat Royal Thai AFB, Thailand, from November 1974 to January 1976. During this time he participated in the evacuation of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, in April 1975, and was on the assault force during the Mayaguez Incident in May 1975. Being the last combatant to disengage from enemy contact during the Mayaguez incident, he became the last American serviceman to tactically oppose and engage communist forces in Southeast Asia. He next served as a pararescue technician with the 41st Rescue and Weather Reconnaissance Wing at Clark AB in the Philippines, from January 1976 to January 1977, and then as NCOIC and then Chief of the Pararescue Section with the 33rd ARRS at Clark AB from January 1977 to October 1979. SMSgt Fisk served as Pararescue Standardization and Evaluation Flight Examiner and then as Superintendent of the Pararescue Section with Headquarters Aerospace Rescue and Recovery Service at Scott AFB, Illinois, from October 1979 until he medically retired from Pararescue duty due to parachute injuries in May 1983. After graduating as a Distinguished Graduate from the U.S. Air Force Senior Noncommissioned Officer Academy, he completed the U.S. Air Force Academic Instructor School and then served as an Academic Instructor back at the Air Force Senior NCO Academy and as Director of the U.S. Air Force Enlisted Heritage Hall at Gunter AFS, Alabama, from February 1984 to March 1989. During this time he conceived, designed, developed, and supervised the Enlisted Heritage Hall, the first facility totally dedicated to the preservation and dissemination of enlisted contributions to the development of air power. After completing training at the Defense Intelligence Agency, CMSgt Fisk served as Operations Coordinator to the Defense Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa, Canada, until his retirement from the Air Force on August 1, 1993.
His 1st (of 2) Silver Star Citation reads:
Staff Sergeant Wayne L. Fisk distinguished himself by gallantry in the all-volunteer Joint Chiefs of Staff-directed United States Army and Air Force military operation against an opposing armed force during the Prisoner of War Search and Rescue Operation at Son Tay, North Vietnam, on 21 November 1970. On that date, Sergeant Fisk, as a Paramedic-Gunner prepared to evacuate the ground rescue party and freed prisoners, flew deep into the heart of enemy territory in a bold night attempt to rescue American Prisoners of War. Throughout the entire mission, he manned his position with bravery and aggressiveness while maintaining the critical fire discipline necessary for properly conducting this humanitarian operation. During the return flight, he was a vital crew member in the pickup of a downed fighter pilot. The personal skill and extreme courage displayed by Sergeant Fisk in the very hazardous rescue attempt contributed immeasurably to the ultimate effectiveness and tactical success of the mission. By his gallantry and devotion to duty, Sergeant Fisk has reflected great credit upon himself and the United States Air Force.