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    115th Fighter Wing holds ceremony for final F-16 combat deployment on 20th anniversary of September 11th attacks

    115th Fighter Wing holds ceremony for final F-16 combat deployment on 20th anniversary of September 11th attacks

    Photo By Senior Airman Anya Hanson | Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is presented a flag that was flown in one of the F-16...... read more read more



    Story by Senior Airman Anya Hanson 

    115th Fighter Wing

    Approximately 300 members of the 115th Fighter Wing and the 378th Fighter Squadron attended a sendoff ceremony Sept. 11, 2011, with their families and counterparts prior to their upcoming deployment at Truax Field.
    Both civilian and military leadership were present to show their support during the event. Wisconsin’s Gov. Tony Evers expressed his appreciation to the guard as they continued to perform federal combat deployments while still serving their state through domestic operations like the COVID-19 Response Mission and Operation Allies Refuge.
    The ceremony was symbolically held on the 20th anniversary of the attacks on September 11th, 2001. Since that time, the 115th FW has flown over 49,000 missions around the world. Over the past 20 years, the 115th FW has gone from a strategic reserve sometimes used operationally, to an operational reserve called upon often as the primary combat reserve for both state and federal missions.
    “The significance of the 9/11 attacks are lost on no one in this unit, that day affected us all in so many ways, and continues to shape our sacrifice today,” said Col. Bart Van Roo, the commander of the 115th FW. “Since 9/11, the 115th Fighter Wing has stood on alert, ready to provide security at a moment’s notice. We have answered our call time and time again, with professionalism, dedication to duty, and unwavering excellence.”
    In honor of the September 11th attacks, ceremony attendees walked onto the flightline after the event to watch two F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft take-off to perform a fly over at Camp Randall Stadium.
    This deployment also marks the final combat deployment in the F-16 before the base begins its transition to the F-35 Lightning II aircraft.
    The ceremony is a time not only to show support and appreciation for the service members departing, but to recognize loved ones at home affected by the deployment as well. Parents, children, significant others, neighbors, and friends may all need support during a guard member’s combat deployment. Leadership attending the event ensured the deploying members that their families back home will be cared for.
    “Please lean on us whenever you need us,” said Chief Master Sgt. Meredith Conn, the Wisconsin Air National Guard command chief. “Ask for help, and someone will be there, even for the smallest things.”



    Date Taken: 09.11.2021
    Date Posted: 09.12.2021 14:44
    Story ID: 405031
    Location: WI, US

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