About 350 Ellsworth airmen are deploying to Southwest Asia. They said goodbye to family and friends on Friday. The 28th Bomb Wing is deploying a portion of its B-1 Bomber fleet to support missions in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.
On Friday afternoon, airmen waited in line to be screened; they fly out Friday evening. For some of them, this is the first time they are deploying.
Commanders say they have been trained and well prepared. They also say it helps that the airmen get a lot of support from the community.
"I'm really proud of these guys and the hard work they put in to get to this point. I'm excited to see what they are going to do," said Lt. Col. Seth Graham, 34th Bomb Squadron Commander.
"It's important for all these folks leaving, leaving their families for six plus months, for them to know that people still care and are interested," said Captain Reid Inman, Installation Deployment Officer.
This deployment is part of the regular rotation. They are replacing a B–1 unit from Dyess Air Force Base in Texas.