Dyess Airmen deploy to Africa

7th Bomb Wing Public Affairs
Story by Airman Kylee Thomas

Date: 09.20.2017
Posted: 09.20.2017 14:10
News ID: 248970
Dyess Airmen deploy to Africa

Approximately 100 Airmen assigned to the 317th Airlift Wing deployed to Africa September 6, 2017 to support counterterrorist operations and to act as the rescue support element for Americans in the continent of Africa.
Dyess aircrews deploy on a rotational basis, providing combat-delivery capability through tactical airlift and airdrop operations as well as humanitarian efforts and aeromedical evacuations for U.S. and coalition forces in the U.S. Africa Command and U.S. Air Forces in Europe area of responsibility.
“I’m very excited about this deployment,” said Lt. Col. Mark Yarian, 39th Airlift Squadron commander. “It is a very prideful mission that our men and women are taking on and they’re willing to take large amounts of risks to do what it takes to help Americans in need.”
For roughly half of the Airmen, this will be their first deployment. Although it is their first time deploying, they have trained very hard and are ready to complete their mission.
“For this deployment, we have a lot of newer Airmen who were willing to step up and deploy in order to protect America’s freedom,” said Yarian. “I’m very proud to see that some of our newest Americans are willing to put on the uniform and raise their hand to go serve their country.”
For some Airmen, they will leave behind their families in order to defend the freedom of their country. Although they may be miles away, family and friends give tremendous support to the deployed Airmen and hope for safe travels.
“This is the second deployment my husband has gone on, but now I have my cute little buddy to keep me busy this time around,” said Dyess key spouse Shelly Swope while holding her four month old child. “We’re praying for a safe deployment and for everyone to come home unharmed as well.”
This experience can become very stressful and hard on Airmen as they deal with the pressures that come with deploying, however, Yarian has much confidence in the Airmen and takes pride in knowing he has served alongside them.
“I’m very proud of the men and women of the 317th AW,” said Yarian. “They are some of the most expert, highly trained and motivated individuals I have ever had the pleasure of serving with.”