Twenty Airmen from Delaware Air Guard returned home Friday and Monday after six-month deployments to Southwest Asia combat zones

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Twenty Airmen from two units in the Delaware Air National Guard returned home Friday and Monday after six-month deployments to Southwest Asia combat zones.
The Airmen reside in the four states of Del. (11 Airmen), N.J. (5 Airmen), Pa. (3 Airmen) and Md. (1 Airman).

Thirteen security forces Airmen returned on Friday, Oct. 21, followed by seven firefighting Airmen who returned on Monday, Oct. 24. The 20 Airmen completed a six-month deployment to Southwest Asia combat zones.

The firefighters returned together as a group, as did the security forces Airmen. Due to the lengthy flights home and long time away from families, the Airmen went through expedited in-processing without speeches or fanfare so they could go home to begin a couple months of well-earned leave.

"All 20 of our Airmen completed their long missions and met the highest standards of the Air Force and the U.S. military. Their unit leadership and me could not be more impressed with their professional service and dedication to duty," said Col. Jonathan H. Groff, wing commander, 166th Airlift Wing. "They each helped provide security and safety for many thousands of fellow U.S. troops in multiple countries in the Southwest Asia combat zone, and did so in a manner that they, their families, their community and their nation should be very proud of."

Six of the seven firefighters from the 166th Civil Engineer Squadron were assigned to the 405th Expeditionary Civil Engineer Squadron fire department in one nation, and the seventh firefighter was deployed to another nation in the combat zone. They each performed standard base firefighting duties and fire protection services for all U.S. and coalition aircraft at their facility.

On Friday, Oct. 21, all 13 Security Forces Airmen from the 166th Security Forces Squadron arrived in the U.S. after completing missions in Afghanistan, in-processed at the New Castle ANG Base, and briefly reunited with their families and went home. The Airmen performed area security operations duties such as convoys and perimeter security, often working on duty outside the wire of their base in Afghanistan.

The Security Forces Airmen were activated for federal active duty in January, and most went through the Evasion and Conduct after Capture (ECAC) course and Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape (SERE) training at the U.S. Air Force Survival School at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. This training is given to troops such as the 166th Security Forces Squadron members who will operate outside the wire of their base in Afghanistan. The training lasted about two months and was followed by combat training.

The 13 returning security forces Airmen from the 166th Security Forces Squadron, Delaware Air National Guard: Master Sgt. Joseph Ahearn, a resident of Ridley Park, Pa., Staff Sgt. Spencer Alexander, a resident of Dover, Del., Tech. Sgt. John Donmoyer, a resident of Bear, Del., Senior Airman Jason Duricek, a resident of Wilmington, Del. , Senior Airman Adam Hardesty, a resident of Shermans Dale, Pa., Senior Airman Christopher Jackowski, a resident of Newark, Del., Airman 1st Class Michael Kern, a resident of Deptford, N.J., Tech. Sgt. Timothy Luko, a resident of Wenonah, N.J., Tech. Sgt. Daniel McCabe, a resident of Williamstown, N.J., Staff Sgt. Charles Piccolomini, a resident of Wilmington, Del., Senior Airman Richard Quartarone, a resident of Bear, Del., Staff Sgt. Carlos Useche, a resident of Branchburg, N.J., and Senior Airman Keith Edwards, a resident of Port Deposit, Md.

The seven returning firefighting Airmen from the 166th Civil Engineer Squadron, Delaware Air National Guard: Staff Sgt. Deanne Warner, a resident of Hancocks Bridge, N.J., Staff Sgt. Edward Brooks, a resident of Wilm., Del., Staff Sgt. Michael Puglisi, a resident of Newark, Del., Senior Airman John Buchanan, a resident of Wilm., Del., newly promoted Staff Sgt. Ronald Stanton, a resident of West Grove, Pa., Senior Airman Patrick Burns, a resident of Newark, Del., and Airman 1st Class Joshua Davis, a resident of Newark, Del.

The Delaware ANG has 1,100 members, and continually deploys personnel and subordinate units around the globe.

This release is in the public domain, and any part may be used as written.

Delaware Air National Guard: Celebrating 65 years of Citizen-Airman service to our state and nation, 1946-2011

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High-resolution captioned photos with individual ID of each of the 20 Airman are downloadable.

Photos for 13 Airmen from 166th Security Forces Squadron:

Photos for seven firefighters of the 166th Civil Engineer Squadron:

The 20 Airmen are residents of Del., Pa. N.J. and Md.

State/city breakdowns:

Eleven Del. residents from: Newark (3), Bear (2), Wilmington (5) and Dover (1)

Three Pa. residents from: West Grove (1), Ridley Park (1) and Shermans Dale (1)

Five N.J. residents from: Hancocks Bridge (1), Deptford (1), Wenonah (1), Williamstown (1) and Branchburg (1)

One Md. resident from: Port Deposit (1)

Media contact:

Contact Tech. Sgt. Benjamin Matwey, Public Affairs Specialist, 166th Airlift Wing, Delaware Air National Guard, 2600 Spruance Drive, New Castle, DE 19720, at (302) 323-3369, or cell (302) 593-2126.