Lt.Col.(sel) Regan Lyon is an Air Force emergency medicine physician and Defense Analysis student at NPS. Upon completion of her emergency medical residency, she was assigned to the 21st Special Tactics Squadron at Pope Army Airfield as the flight surgeon and medical director for the squadron medical element. During this assignment, she deployed with the 83rd Expeditionary Rescue Squadron as the flight surgeon and medical director. She oversaw continuing medical education and served as an operation center liaison in a deployed SOF operation to coordinate patient evacuation. From 2015-2016, LtCol Lyon served as the medical director and flight commander for the Osan Emergency Department in South Korea and was responsible for planning the department’s contingency casualty response. She returned to special operations in 2016 after being selected for the Special Operations Surgical Team (SOST). Following her initial training phase, she deployed as the team’s emergency medicine physician in 2017 to Raqqa, Syria, providing austere damage control surgery and resuscitation capabilities in support of Operation INHERENT RESOLVE. In 2018, she was appointed as the SOST Team Leader and led her team during a deployment to Syria in 2019.
LtCol Lyon has specific interests in the employment of medicine on the battlefield, extending from point of injury to austere surgery, and its impact on operations. She has been a guest speaker at multiple medical conferences to present advancements in trauma care on the battlefield. In recognition of her academic contributions, she was appointed an Assistant Professorship at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences Department of Military and Emergency Medicine, where she helped develop the medical school’s operational medicine course and text.
I started at NPS in March 2020, so I have never experienced what the school was like before COVID-19, but I would have to say the weather and the scenery! Even though LtCol Lyon is an accomplished scuba diver, she said that she hasn't been able to explore the bay as much as she would like because of COVID restrictions and because she works at a local civilian hospital on weekends.
My parents were in the Air Force. I didn’t know what life outside of the military was like. When I was younger, I would only be interested in a job/career if the military had spots for it. When asked how working in a civilian hospital differs from her military career, she replied, "it's painful and a bit like Groundhog Day. It's much harder to work together and collaborate on a patient's health."
My time on the surgical teams was fantastic, especially my time as a team leader. It gave me a lot of insight into operations and mission planning, and I loved working with the operators to optimize our effectiveness by employment of surgical support for US and partner forces.