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All four of the 62nd Airlift Wing's airlift squadrons are home

McChord flying squadrons receive new deployment schedule

1st Lt. Craig Duffy, 1st Lt. Darren Stowe, Staff Sgt. David Schmitz and Senior Airman Ben Gatdula show their squadron patches in front of a C-17 Globemaster III Aug. 13, at JBLM. Photo credit: Airman 1st Class Jacob Jimenez

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For the first time since 2006, all four of the 62nd Airlift Wing's airlift squadrons are home.

The squadrons are back home as result of a new deployment rotation schedule which will allow them to rotate deployments with Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina.

"This rotation allows for a greater period of time between deployments for each base and provides us a better capability to fly worldwide missions," said Lt. Col Myers Gray, 7th Airlift Squadron deputy commander.

The new deployment rotation schedule came about following the deactivation of the 817th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron last March. That squadron was stood down by Col. Andrew Hird, 62nd Operations Group commander, when he was the acting 385th Air Expeditionary Group commander.

Prior to the deactivation of the 817th EAS, the 62nd AW's flying squadrons deployed on a continuous 60-day rotation to one of the two EAS units assigned to the 385th AEG.

Currently in transition to the new deployment schedule, the 62nd AW's flying squadrons will start the new deployment rotation this fall, deploying as part of the 816th EAS.

Although the rotation schedule has changed, each of the four airlift squadrons will maintain the same level of worldwide deployability and readiness as before, while providing an increased availability to airdrop capabilities, said Gray.

"On the old rotation, when one of our three airdrop squadrons deployed, we would only have two other airdrop squadrons at home to fulfill airdrop training lines and support our joint base partners," said Gray. "With the new rotation, we will have the ability to intermingle crews between squadrons to provide the best crew match for any mission tasking we might receive.

"The impact of having all four squadrons at home at once allows us to capitalize on the synergies associated with a 'super base.'"

Airman 1st Class Jacob Jimenez is with the 62nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs.

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