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500+ to be deployed to Middle East from Gowen

Posted at 4:23 PM, Feb 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-29 23:48:26-05

The Idaho Air National Guard has announced that more than 500 members of the 124th Fighter Wing at Gowen Field will be headed to the Middle East as part of Operation Inherent Resolve to fight the Islamic State.

“This deployment highlights the dedication of the 124th Fighter Wing and its members, as well as the community of families, state and local leaders, neighbors and employers who have demonstrated once again their steadfast and unwavering support of Idaho’s service members,” Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter said. “The impact on the community is recognized and their sacrifice is deeply appreciated.”

Deployments last up to 180 days with multiple departures spread out over the next several months.

"This is what the Idaho Air National Guard trains for so this is something that we are prepared for," Maj. Chris Borders explained. "It is something that we are not new to.  We have deployed many times in the past and have gone through nine different fighter aircraft here at Gowen Field. The A-10's will be supporting in these combat operations for this deployment."

The mission consists of multiple aircrafts, pilots, maintenance personnel, security forces, medical personnel and various other support staff.