KRIS “TANTO” PARONTO
Kris Paronto – “Tanto” as he is affectionately known in security contracting circles – is a former Army Ranger from 2nd Battalion 75th Ranger Regiment and private security contractor who has deployed throughout South America, Central America, the Middle East and North Africa. He also worked with the US Government’s Global Response Staff conducting low profile security in high threat environments throughout the world.
Mr. Paronto was part of the CIA annex security team that responded to the terrorist attack on the US Special Mission in Benghazi, Libya, September 11th, 2012, helping to save over 20 lives while fighting off terrorists from the CIA Annex for over 13 hours. Mr. Paronto’s story is told in the book “13 Hours” written by Mitchell Zuckoff and his five surviving annex security team members.
Mr. Paronto was born in Alamosa, Colorado and obtained his Associate Degree from Dixie College (now Dixie State University) in St. George, Utah, Bachelor’s Degree from Mesa State College in Grand Junction, Colorado and Masters Degree from The University of Nebraska at Omaha. He served 4 years in the US Army and an additional 4 years in the US Army National Guard reaching the rank of Sergeant then becoming a commissioned officer in 2003. He started contracting for Blackwater Security Consulting in 2003 and continued to deploy on various security contracts, to include the Global Response Staff until 2013.
Mr. Paronto has been involved in security operations in hostile environments for over 10 years. His team’s involvement with the September 11th, 2012 attack on the US special mission in Benghazi, Libya was paramount in the saving of US lives and assets. He is a proven leader, teammate and friend to those who have deployed with him, and a devout father to three children.
Douglas “Mike” Day
Senior Chief Petty Officer Special Operator SEAL, Douglas “Mike” Day, entered a tiny room in a raid on high-level al Qaeda militants in Iraq’s Anbar province on, April 6, 2007, a bullet slammed into his body armor from less than 10 feet away.
By the time it was over, Day had been shot 16 times from a distance of within 10 feet, not counting the 11 rounds stopped by his body armor. He also suffered grenade shrapnel wounds that knocked him unconscious.
Before the firefight was over, a fellow SEAL was killed by a gunshot wound to the neck, yet Day was miraculously able to walk to the medevac helicopter on his own two feet. He spent the next two years recovering from his injuries, and still suffers lingering pain on a daily basis.
Retired from the Navy, Day now works as a full-time advocate for wounded veterans and their families.
“Despite multiple gunshot wounds, he continued to engage the enemy, transitioning to his pistol after the loss of his primary weapon, eliminating three enemy personnel without injury to the women and children in close proximity to the enemy personnel. Additionally, his decisive leadership and mental clarity in the face of his injuries ensured the success of the mission which resulted in the destruction of four enemy personnel and the recovery of sensitive United States military equipment and valuable intelligence concerning enemy activity in the area.”