SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. (AP/WVOC) - About two dozen pilots and F-16 Fighting Falcon jets from the 77th Fighter Squadron are back home at Shaw Air Force Base after a six-month deployment to Afghanistan.
Staff Sergeant Alexandria Mosness says the pilots and aircraft of the unit dubbed “The Gamblers” returned Tuesday afternoon.
The unit suffered the loss of one of its pilots, Captain James Steel, three weeks ago when his F-16 crashed in Afghanistan.
Steel was returning to the base in Kandahar from an air support mission for ground troops. Mosness says a memorial for Steel is scheduled for April 30th.
Remaining members of the Gambler Aircraft Maintenance unit and the 20th Operations Support Squadron are returning later this week.
(Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force/Shaw Air Force Base)