434th SFS Members Come Home from Deployment
07/31/15 – GRISSOM AIR RESERVE BASE, Ind. —
Roughly 50 Airmen from Grissom’s 434th Security Forces Squadron and 434th Civil Engineering Squadron returned home from a 180-day deployment to Southwest Asia July 21-22.
The members were greeted by friends and family, and their smiles and cheers pierced air as they watched the KC-135 Stratotanker taxi to the hangar.
The family of Senior Airman Manuel Parades, a 434th SFS fire team member, was among those holding signs anxiously waiting the deplaning of deployers.
“My hero doesn’t wear a cape,” read a sign held by Franky Parades, the brother of Manuel.
“It was great to see my family and girlfriend when I got off the aircraft,” Airman Parades said. “They drove down from Chicago to see me, and it was good to see them after so long.”
“What a great way to start the day,” said Col. Doug Schwartz, 434th Air Refueling Wing commander. “Seeing the joyful reunions always warms your heart and brings to the forefront the sacrifices our members and their families make to serve our nation.”
“We had a lot of young people on this deployment,” said Chief Master Sgt. Rickie King, 434th SFS manager. “It was really good for them to experience the mission on a day to day basis for 180 days.”
“I’ve waited a long time for this day,” said Jessica Dill, who was waiting for her husband Master Sgt. Robert Dill III, 434th CES power production specialist, to arrive. “We’ve missed him so much.”
During their deployment the 434th CES team was attached to various missions throughout the Air Forces Central Command area of responsibility that supported Operations Enduring Freedom, Freedom’s Sentinal and Inherent Resolve.
One of those missions was providing water to an undisclosed base in Iraq, said Senior Master Sgt. Christopher Brill, 434th CES operations superintendent.
“One of our biggest feats was building a well for the base,” said Brill. “The base had been without water for 16 days when we arrived. The well we provided, allowed them to fill storage tanks that held 1.5 million gallons of water for military personnel and refugees housed at the base.”
“It felt good knowing that the work we did while we were there would continue to help people even after we were gone,” said Senior Master Sgt. Nate Colborn, 434th CES heavy repair superintendent. “Everyone had a really good attitude throughout the deployment, but we are all glad to be back.”
The members arrived in Baltimore, Maryland, where they cleared customs before their final leg home to Grissom.
After turning in equipment, they were released until later in the day for final in processing before beginning their recovery and leave time.
The 434th ARW is the largest KC-135R Stratotanker in the Air Force Reserve Command. Airmen and aircraft from the 434th ARW routinely deploy around the world in support of the Air Force mission and U.S. strategic objectives.
By Tech. Sgt. Douglas Hays and Tech. Sgt. Benjamin Mota,
434th ARW Public Affairs / Published July 31, 2015
Family and friends of Senior Airman Manuel Paredes, 434th Security Forces fire team member, pose for a photo at Grissom Air Reserve Base, Ind., July 21, 2015. Paredes and 29 other defenders returned from a 180-day deployment to Southwest Asia. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Douglas Hays)
The family of Master Sgt. Robert T. Dill, III, 434th Civil Engineer Squadron power production journeyman, lines up to welcome him home to Grissom Air Reserve Base, Ind., July 22, 2015. Dill was among a group of 19 civil engineers who completed a 180-day deployment to Southwest Asia. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Benjamin Mota)
Staff Sgt. Jesse Capps, 434th Security Forces fire team member, shares a moment with his wife, Lydia, upon return to Grissom Air Reserve Base, Ind., July 21, 2015. Capps and 29 other SFS members returned from a six-month deployment to Southwest Asia. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Douglas Hays)
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