Delaware airmen pack for Afghanistan region

Members of the 46th Aerial Port Squadron got their affairs in order at Dover Air Force Base this morning, before heading to the Kyrgyz Republic as part of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Dozens of airmen, from Delaware, Pennsylvania and Maryland spent the morning making sure they were ready to be deployed overseas for their role in supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

Captain Crystal Beach says the goal is to make sure both the soldiers and their families are prepared when they leave later this week.  In addition to making sure their medical records are intact and their information is correct on their dog tags, the soldiers also go over their financial standing to make sure everything is in order,

“Making sure that all the airmen understand what their benefits are and what entitlements they will receive,” says Beach.  “People like the staff Judge Advocates office who make sure that any powers of attorneys that their families may need while they’re gone are completed and also any wills that need to be done last minute are completed.”

Senior Airmen Ashley Nolan says she’s excited to be making her first deployment overseas, “I’m looking forward to it, everything that I’m going to learn and experience while I’m over there.”  Nolan joined the Air Force after her brother was killed in action in Afghanistan.  “Although I’m not grateful for losing him, I’m grateful that it opened my eyes to this life, and I’m just happy to be here, although I’m sad to have lost Adam, it was a sacrifice.”

The soldiers will be overseas for about six months,  meaning they’ll miss the holidays with their families, some for the first time.  Nolan leaves behind a fiancé who is also active duty with the Air Force, but she says she’s prepared to deal with the separation.  “It’s part of the job, it’s what we do.  It’s what I’ve trained for, so when duty calls you just do it.”

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