Approximately 300 airmen from the 122nd Fighter Wing, equating to a third of its members, are returning from deployment from their recent mission as a part of Operations Inherent Resolve and Enduring Freedom. The unit, which flies the A-10C ³Warthog² airframe, deployed overseas since early October to the U.S. Central Command region.
³My goal from the start has been to ensure that 100 percent of our airmen return from their mission overseas,² said Col. Patrick R. Renwick, 122nd Fighter Wing Commander. ³I am humbled to serve and command such a respected wing and am incredibly proud of these returning airmen.²
³This deployment has been a unique and outstanding moment in Blacksnake history,² said Renwick. ³The 122nd has never before completed a deployment for such a length of time with so many members taking part at once. The fact that over 300 Blacksnakes were overseas meeting and exceeding mission expectations for over half a year is a testament to their experience, training and endurance as a wing. The 122nd has established itself the proven choice as a warfighter.²
The deployment was historic for its combination of length and size relative to previous 122nd Fighter Wing deployments. In the past, it was rare for an entire Air Package, consisting of operations and maintenance personnel, to deploy overseas for any period of time close to six months.
The airmen were deployed after extensive preparation, ranging from cultural awareness to weapons qualification to medical training. They carried out the same job overseas that they had been training monthly for at the 122nd Fighter Wing as drill status guardsmen.
The 122nd Fighter Wing has had over 2000 service members volunteer for deployments
around the world since 9-11, to locations including Iraq, Afghanistan, Spain, Japan and
within the United States among other locations.