U.S. Airmen assigned to the 158th Fighter Wing, Vermont National Guard, board an aircraft at the Burlington International Airport, South Burlington, Vt., Dec. 7, 2016. PHOTO: U.S. Air National Guard  Tech. Sgt. Sarah Mattison.

Answering the Call: 158th Fighter Wing Deploys in Support of Operation Inherent Resolve

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Thursday December 15, 2016

Airmen and aircraft from the Vermont Air National Guard’s 158th Fighter Wing were deployed December 7 in support of Operation Inherent Resolve. A squadron of F-16 Fighting Falcons from the 134th Fighter Squadron and approximately 300 Airmen from the Wing are on route to the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.

“The men and women of the Vermont Air National Guard have shown how well they are trained, prepared, and ready whenever the state or the nation calls on us. It is no small feat to send approximately 300 Airmen on a deployment with such short notice and is a testament to the hard work of these men and women. This is also a testament to the strength of our military family, who no doubt have heavy hearts due to a deployment over the holiday season, but they are there to support all of us,” said Maj. Gen. Steven A. Cray, adjutant general, Vermont National Guard.

While deployed, the squadron will be flying combat missions in support of Operation Inherent Resolve to degrade and destroy ISIS. Due to evolving mission requirements in Iraq and Syria, and as forces rotate throughout the AOR (area of responsibility), this squadron will provide precision air-to-ground attack capabilities to support operations against ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

“I am proud of the men and women of the 158th Fighter Wing. We are volunteers with a unique capability and were asked to do something on behalf of this great nation,” said Col. Patrick Guinee, commander, 158th Fighter Wing, Vermont Air National Guard.

This deployment demonstrates the United States’ continued, long-term commitment to the region and the Air Force’s flexibility to meet the dynamic requirements of warfighting commanders.
“The Green Mountain Boys have been answering the call to action for the past 241 years. Defending our state and nation is what we do,” said Guinee.