They’re Baaaack: Global Vikings return home from Djibouti

  • Published
  • By Senior Airmen Matthew Reisdorf
  • 934th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Approximately 150 934th Airlift Wing Airmen returned home from a deployment to Djibouti in the Horn of Africa this week.

The Airmen deployed in support of Operation East Africa Counterterrorism. The mission's main goal was to conduct operations that enhanced partner nation capacity, promote regional peace and stability, dissuade conflict, and protect the U.S. and its allies' interests.

At the end of the deployment, the 96th Airlift Squadron successfully flew over 900 hours, 399 sorties and evacuated 15 patients. Moreover, the 934th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron worked hard to ensure all 934 AW C-130Hs Hercules were airworthy in the harsh Djibouti heat to meet mission completion. 

Having deployed numerous times throughout his career, Lt. Col. Kenneth Rogers, 934th Operations Support Squadron director of operations, stepped off the plane happy because this deployment was different for him and his family.

"This is the best feeling of any deployment," said Rogers. "This one is just special because my family has been with me through all of these. It's my last one, and it's great just to be home."

"All the train-up that goes into this lasts about 1-2 years," said Chief Master Sgt. Jennifer Murphy, the 934th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron superintendent. "It all builds up to this. The deployment is kind of like our Super bowl. It's a constant preparation that enables all our training to be used fully."

Leading up to the 934 AW's homecoming, numerous organizations at the event served food and refreshments donated to 934 AW family members and friends. Those organizations were: The American Legion Department of Minnesota, The Hugo Beyond the Yellow Ribbon chapter, and The Hiway Credit Union Beyond the Yellow Ribbon chapter.

The 934 AW, known as the "Global Vikings," is Minnesota's only Air Force Reserve unit. It is a combat-ready Air Force Reserve Command flying unit that serves as the host for Army, Navy, Marine and Air National Guard units at the Minneapolis-St. Paul Air Reserve Station.