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Monday, September 13, 2010

908th members returning this week

Members of the 908th Airlift Wing are returning from the desert this week. Check back here for more information and coverage.

The 908th deployed in May, after several delays due to the volcanic ash over Europe.

About 150 people deployed with several of the wing's C-130 cargo planes. The 908th is the only Air Force Reserve unit in the state and this was their first time back to the desert since 2008.

They've been flying combat support mission in Afghanistan, Iraq and the Horn of Africa for about four months. Flights crews, maintenance personnel and medical personnel are on the volunteer deployment.

While there, some of the aircraft and crews were diverted to aid in the Pakistan flood relief operations.

In mid-August, two aircraft and crews and maintenance personnel were diverted to Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan and then on to Islamabad, the capital of Pakistan, to help transport relief supplies, said Lt. Col. Jerry Lobb, the wing spokesman.

Lobb said they supported the Pakistan relief efforts for about two weeks and then returned to their undisclosed deployed location.

While deployed, the Maxwell unit is the 746th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron and their commander is Lt. Col. Scott Hayes of Montgomery.

The airmen used their C-130 Hercules cargo planes to move food, medical supplies and other relief items from an airfield near Islamabad to smaller, outlying airfields closer the where the supplies are needed, Lobb said.

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I grew up in the military. Mom was an Air Force nurse for a few years, dad was a navigator on B-52s, among other things. One grandfather served in World War II, uncle is retired Navy, other grandfather and great-uncle served in Korea and a cousin is currently serving in the Marine Corps. Currently, I'm the military reporter for the Great Falls Tribune in Montana. Previously, 


As a military kids, we moved all over. As an adult, I've traveled all over and moved for work. But now, I'm putting down roots in Montana with my boyfriend. We just bought a house and are slowly but surely making it our home. We have more land that we know what to do with at the moment. Now we're getting a garden started, tearing down walls and having loads of fun at what we call the Homestead.

In a part life, I did PR for the guy who built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, social media for the National Museum of Health and Medicine, before that, edited two military technology magazines for a publishing group in the DC area and before that, I was the military reporter (among other things) at the Montgomery Advertiser, covering Maxwell Air Force Base, the Alabama National Guard, veterans and anything else military related in the area. And in between all of that, I leave town, preferably the country, whenever possible. It all started when I spent a semester in New Zealand.

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