Leadership helps bring home deployed Airmen

  • Published
  • By Ben Mota
  • 434th ARW Public Affairs

Sixteen returning Reserve Citizen Airmen got a surprise when they boarded a KC-135R Stratotanker only to find that one of their pilots was also their wing commander.

Col. Larry Shaw, 434th Air Refueling Wing commander, and another pilot flew a KC-135 to Baltimore Washington International Airport to transport the returning deployers to their families waiting at Grissom Air Reserve Base, Indiana, July 15.

Accompanying Shaw was Col. Scott Russell, 434th Mission Support Group commander, who also flew to greet the returning Airmen.

“It’s always great to help our deployers return home,” said Shaw. “My goal is to always get people home to their loved ones as soon as possible.”

The wing is currently going through one of the largest deployment cycles since 9/11.

“These folks were gone a long time, and represented Grissom and the 434th ARW with tremendous professionalism,” said Shaw.  “It’s an honor to get them through the last leg of their journey so they can be with their families.”

The 434th ARW is the largest KC-135R Stratotanker unit in the Air Force Reserve Command. Men and women from the Hoosier Wing routinely deploy around the world in support of the Air Force mission.

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