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166th Airlift Wing Airmen deploy in support of USCENTCOM

Airmen wave to their families and friends as they bus out to the flightline prior to take off at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. Over seventy percent of the Delaware ANG are part-time, traditional Guardsmen and are deploying for their first time. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Katherine Miller)

Airmen wave to their families and friends as they bus out to the flightline prior to take off at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. Over seventy percent of the Delaware ANG are part-time, traditional Guardsmen and are deploying for their first time. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Katherine Miller)

Delaware Gov. John Carney speaks with Airmen prior to their departure for a deployment at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. In addition to Gov. Carney, The Adjutant General - Air, Delaware National Guard, Maj. Gen. Carol Timmons attended the farewell event to send off deploying ANG Airmen. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. John Michaels)

Delaware Gov. John Carney speaks with Airmen prior to their departure for a deployment at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. In addition to Gov. Carney, The Adjutant General - Air, Delaware National Guard, Maj. Gen. Carol Timmons attended the farewell event to send off deploying ANG Airmen. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. John Michaels)

166th AW Airmen organize duty and personal equipment for deploying ANG members at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. Deployments offer an active-duty experience to traditional ANG members, as many ANG members serve one weekend per month and two weeks out of the year. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. John Michaels)

166th AW Airmen organize duty and personal equipment for deploying ANG members at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. Deployments offer an active-duty experience to traditional ANG members, as many ANG members serve one weekend per month and two weeks out of the year. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. John Michaels)

Families of Delaware Air National Guardsman watch as Airmen depart for deployment at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. Family members showed their support for deploying Airmen by attending a farewell event and watching as the aircraft departed from the flightline. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Katherine Miller)

Families of Delaware Air National Guardsman watch as Airmen depart for deployment at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. Family members showed their support for deploying Airmen by attending a farewell event and watching as the aircraft departed from the flightline. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Katherine Miller)

A C-130H takes off from the flightline at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. More than one hundred Airmen assigned to the 166th Airlift Wing deployed with C-130H aircraft to Southwest Asia in support of the United States Central Command. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Katherine Miller)

A C-130H takes off from the flightline at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 25, 2018. More than one hundred Airmen assigned to the 166th Airlift Wing deployed with C-130H aircraft to Southwest Asia in support of the United States Central Command. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Katherine Miller)

NEW CASTLE AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Del. -- More than one hundred Airmen assigned to the 166th Airlift Wing deployed with C-130H aircraft to Southwest Asia in support of the United States Central Command, June 25 and 27, 2018 at New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del.

USCENTCOM is a warfighting Combatant Command. Its mission is to direct and enable military operations and activities with allies and partners to increase regional security and stability in support of enduring U.S. interests.

For some Airmen, this is their first time deploying to an overseas location.

“I’m very excited to get over there for my first deployment,” said Tech. Sgt. Briana Walker, 166th Maintenance Squadron scheduling and documentation. “I’ve known about this for about a year now and I’ve been anxiously waiting to get my foot out the door. It’s going to be an adjustment but at the end of the day, we’re going there to do what we do in support of what we signed up for.”

Over seventy percent of the Delaware ANG are part-time, traditional Guardsmen.

“Their knowledge and abilities are unique,” said Col. Robert Culcasi, 166th AW commander. “They have both their civilian and guard life which brings experience that our active-duty brothers and sisters just don’t have and they are able to employ both of those when they deploy.”

Though many Guardsmen are traditional, deployments offer the experience of serving on active duty to support active-duty missions.

“What these men and women do is a big sacrifice,” said Culcasi. “This state and this nation couldn’t do it without them.”

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