Colorado Air National Guard Citizen-Airmen Return from Iraq
By Capt. Kristin Haley, 140th Wing Public Affairs
/ Published July 28, 2009
BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- More than 200 Airmen assigned to the 140th Wing, Colorado Air National Guard, Buckley Air Force Base, Aurora, Colo., returned from a deployment to Iraq Saturday evening.
More than 300 family and friends gathered at Buckley to welcome home and be reunited with their loved ones.
140th Wing maintenance, support personnel and pilots were away from their families and homes this summer after deploying last May. Most of the Traditional Guard members took leave from their civilian jobs to support the deployment. For many of the members, this was a return trip to Iraq as this is the Wing's fifth deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom since 2003.
While deployed, 140th Wing personnel launched F-16 Fighting Falcons from Joint Base Balad to patrol the skies over Iraq and support coalition ground forces.
"We need to take the time to thank these capable men and women for their courage and sacrifice. Our Airmen have volunteered their time and expertise miles from home to help make the world a safer place. Their families also deserve recognition for interrupting their lives and supporting their Airman as they serve our Nation and defend the freedom of others," said 140th Wing Commander Brig. Gen. Trulan A. Eyre.
Here in Colorado, the 140th Wing's day-to-day mission is to protect our skies by responding rapidly and appropriately to potential air threats in support of Operation Noble Eagle, the military operation to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Aircraft from the 140th Wing are on alert 24/7.