by TSgt. Dan Heaton
127th Wing Public Affairs
1/6/2012 - SELFRIDGE AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Mich. -- Approximately 300 Airmen of the Michigan Air National Guard are returning to Selfridge Air National Guard Base this month, after a four-month deployment to Afghanistan. The Airmen operated and maintained the A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft while deployed, serving with the 451st Air Expeditionary Wing, based at Kandahar Airfield.
"The safe return of our Michigan Airmen is a very welcome way to begin the new year," said Col. Michael Thomas, commander of the 127th Wing, the home unit of the returning Airmen. "The selfless service rendered by these men and women, which included being deployed over the holiday season, epitomizes the core values of the U.S. Air Force."
The deployment was the fourth major deployment of the unit's since 2001. This was the first deployment for the Selfridge fighter aircraft unit to Afghanistan and the first since the 107th Fighter Squadron made the transition to flying the A-10, an air-to-ground attack aircraft. The deployment included members of the 127th Operations Group and the 127th Maintenance Group.
Over the 120-day deployment period, the unit logged approximately 8,300 flight hours in 2,000 sorties, or flight missions.
While the bulk of the unit is returning home in early January, a small cadre will remain behind to assist with the transition of the unit that replaced the Michigan Air Guardsmen at Kandahar, a NATO base in southern Afghanistan.
Composed of approximately 1,700 Citizen-Airmen, the 127th Wing of the Michigan Air National Guard is the host organization at Selfridge, flying the KC-135 Stratotanker, an aerial refueler, and the A-10 Thunderbolt II, also known as the Warthog, which is an air-to-ground attack fighter. In addition to the Wing, Selfridge is home to numerous other military and federal agencies, which fly a variety of helicopters and small, light fixed-wing aircraft.
More information on the 127th Wing and Selfridge Air National Guard Base is available at www.127wg.ang.af.mil.
Comment: Job well done, 107th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron and all supporting units! That was the first leg of an ongoing "Total Force" A-10C combat deployment to the 451st AEW at Kandahar Airfield in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.