Barksdale Airmen return home

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Lillian Miller
  • 2nd Bomb Wing Public Affairs

Airmen from the 96th Bomb Squadron and the 2nd Maintenance Squadron returned after a six-month deployment to Anderson Air Force Base, Guam in support of U.S. Pacific Command’s Continuous Bomber Presence.

While in Guam, the squadron flew deterrence missions and conducted a variety of joint missions with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Marine Corps, Koku Jieitai (Japan Air Self-Defense Force), Republic of Korea Air Force and the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).

“During this deployment, the 96th conducted missions over the South China Sea and Indian Ocean, [they] conducted a forward deployment to RAAF Base Darwin, flew with Joint and Combined partners in the vicinity of Japan and conducted numerous missions across the U.S. Indo-PACOM area of responsibility,” said Lt. Col. Aaron Hedrick, 96th Bomb Squadron director of operations.

Continuous Bomber Presence is a rapid global strike capability that deters and assures allies of the U.S.’s commitment to security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.

“We replaced the 20th Bomb Squadron and are being replaced by the 23rd Bomb Squadron from Minot Air Force Base, N.D.,” Hedrick said.

Much of the success of these missions can be credited to the Airmen that worked around the clock to keep the B-52 Stratofortresses mission ready.

“I’m enormously proud of the job the Airmen of the 96th Bomb Squadron and 2nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron have done over the past six months, and it’s a pleasure to welcome our men and women home,” Hedrick said.