4th AS home after 68-day deployment

By Master Sgt. Todd Wivell on October 5, 2012

More than 80 Airmen from McChord Field's 4th Airlift Squadron, 62nd Operations Group and 446th Airlift Wing were greeted by family and friends Monday after a 68-day deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The Airmen were deployed as the 817th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron. Their mission was to provide global strategic airlift, airdrop, aeromedical evacuation and humanitarian relief, to create an air bridge for personnel, equipment and supplies throughout the assigned areas of responsibility.

"The members of the 817th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron once again knocked it out of the park. I am very proud of all the hard work these Airmen accomplished," said Lt. Col. Jason Ginn, 817th EAS commander. "The efforts of the 4th and their sister squadrons of the 62nd Operations Group combined with our total force brethren of the 446th here at McChord and active duty, Guard and Reserve partners out of Elmendorf and Hickam ensured this was a successful deployment."

During their deployment, the C-17 squadron flew 670 sorties, equaling more than 1,670 hours, moved more than 45,500 passengers and delivered more than 24.2 million pounds of combat sustainment cargo for U.S. military forces in and out of the U.S. Central Command area of operations. In addition, they completed 282 missions with a 96 percent mission effectiveness rate.

"The herculean actions of our Airmen resulted in over 282 combat missions and resulted in the movement of over 24.2 million pounds of cargo and 45,505 passengers in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and the presidential-directed redeployment of surge troops from Afghanistan," said Ginn. "This was a great command experience for me and I hope I have the privilege of commanding these fine Airmen in the future."

The 62nd AW's four active-duty flying squadrons share responsibility for the deployed squadron and rotate operating the 817th EAS continuously. The deployments allow Air Mobility Command to consistently position assets closer to the areas of responsibility.