It’s time to get out the flags, the cameras and the “Welcome Home” posters. South Carolina Air National Guard airmen will return home Sunday afternoon after a 120-day deployment to Iraq.
Families will be on hand to welcome home about 200 members of the 169th Fighter Wing when they return Sunday. About 100 South Carolina Air Guard members and eight F-16s returned from the deployment earlier this week, actually landing at the Georgia Air National Guard base near Savannah, Georgia because of runway construction at McEntire.
During this deployment, 169th Fighter Wing participated in their first combat operation since becoming an “Active Associate” wing. This agreement with the 20th FW at Shaw AFB embeds 150 active duty Airmen with the 169th FW forging an even stronger, more mobile force.
The 169th Fighter Wing detachment was assigned to the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing at Joint Base Balad, Iraq. The 332nd flew more than 800 combat air patrol missions over Iraq from May through August.