On Tuesday, nearly a dozen Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II fixed-wing close air support from the 124th Fighter Wing based at Gowen Field in Boise departed for southwest Asia to support combat operations. More than 400 troops will be deployed during the spring and summer to various location in southwest Asia for up to 180 days, marking the second largest deployment in the wing’s history. The deployment includes multiple aircraft, pilots, security forces, maintenance and medical personnel, along with various other support staff.
“This is what our people signed up for and they are excited for the opportunity to answer the nation’s call. This aircraft is built for supporting troops on the ground, whether that be Army or Marines in contact with the enemy, or protecting downed Airmen; we are primarily driven to an air-ground purpose. ” said 124th Operations Group Commander Col. Matt McGarry, according to a news release. “”
On Monday, Idaho Gov. Brad Little said farewell to the main body of airmen. “We recognize the impact this mission will have on our community and we deeply appreciate the sacrifice of Idaho’s service members,” Idaho Governor Brad Little said. “This deployment once again displays the commitment of the 124th Fighter Wing and its members, as well as the dedication demonstrated by the community of families, state and local leaders, neighbors and employers who provide unwavering support to our service members.”
The 124th Fighter Wing (124 FW) is a unit of the Idaho Air National Guard, stationed at Gowen Field Air National Guard Base, Boise, Idaho. It operates the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft conducting close air support missions. If activated to federal service, the Wing is gained by the United States Air Force Air Combat Command. The last large scale deployment of the 124th Fighter Wing was in 2016, in support of combat operations against ISIS. It was also the largest deployment in the wing’s history.