HILL AIRFORCE BASE, Utah (ABC4 News) – For the second time this year, airmen from the 388th and 419th Fighter Wings deployed into combat.
The 34th Fighter Squadron departed Hill last week for Al Dhafra Air Base in the United Arab Emirates, according to officials.
Officials say this is being done to support the United States Air force Central Command mission in the Middle East.
“I’m extremely proud of all of our Airmen in the 388th and 419th fighter wings,” said Col. Steven Behmer, 388th Fighter Wing commander. “Both they and this platform are absolutely ready for this short-notice tasking, bringing the unique combat capabilities of the F-35A to the fight.”
The group of airmen is made of pilots from active duty, as well as reserve airmen.
The 4th Fighter Squadron according to officials returned to Hill two weeks ago from a 6-month deployment to Al Dhafra.
It was the Air Force’s first F-35A combat deployment where officials say the airmen supported the United States Air Force Central Command Mission in the region.
They performed various missions, including close air support and regional deterrence against aggressors. Officials say they also participated in multi-national exercises, strengthening partnerships and improving interoperability.
By the end of 2019, officials say Hill AFB will be home to 78 F-35s.
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