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Security Airmen back from Iraq

A busload of fifteen Airmen arriving from Iraq is greeted by family, friends, the Patriot Guard Riders and media as they arrive at the St. Paul Air Guard Base, 133rd Airlift Wing of the Minnesota Air National Guard, on Feb. 20, 2011. Col. Greg Haase, wing commander shakes each Airman’s hand, welcoming them home following a six-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn. The Airmen handled law enforcement duties and installation security for U.S. and host nation forces at the air base located at the Baghdad International Airport. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

A busload of fifteen Airmen arriving from Iraq is greeted by family, friends, the Patriot Guard Riders and media as they arrive at the St. Paul Air Guard Base, 133rd Airlift Wing of the Minnesota Air National Guard, on Feb. 20, 2011. Col. Greg Haase, wing commander shakes each Airman’s hand, welcoming them home following a six-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn. The Airmen handled law enforcement duties and installation security for U.S. and host nation forces at the air base located at the Baghdad International Airport. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Staff Sgt. Tony Hamling (center) holds his daughter, 3-year-old Mena, and son Camron, 6,  as his wife Michele looks on to a joyful homecoming for fifteen members of the 133rd Security Forces Squadron on Feb. 20, 2011 at the St. Paul Air National Guard Base. This was the second group of fifteen returning from a six-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn. The Airmen handled law enforcement duties and installation security for U.S. and host nation forces at the air base located at the Baghdad International Airport. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Staff Sgt. Tony Hamling (center) holds his daughter, 3-year-old Mena, and son Camron, 6, as his wife Michele looks on to a joyful homecoming for fifteen members of the 133rd Security Forces Squadron on Feb. 20, 2011 at the St. Paul Air National Guard Base. This was the second group of fifteen returning from a six-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn. The Airmen handled law enforcement duties and installation security for U.S. and host nation forces at the air base located at the Baghdad International Airport. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Senior Airman tony Zerwas (center) gets a hug from his grandfather, Joe Zerwas and is surrounded by his parents, siblings and many others as fifteen members of the 133rd Security Forces Squadron return from Iraq on Feb. 20, 2011 at the St. Paul Air National Guard Base. This was the second group of fifteen returning from a six-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn. The Airmen handled law enforcement duties and installation security for U.S. and host nation forces at the air base located at the Baghdad International Airport. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

Senior Airman tony Zerwas (center) gets a hug from his grandfather, Joe Zerwas and is surrounded by his parents, siblings and many others as fifteen members of the 133rd Security Forces Squadron return from Iraq on Feb. 20, 2011 at the St. Paul Air National Guard Base. This was the second group of fifteen returning from a six-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn. The Airmen handled law enforcement duties and installation security for U.S. and host nation forces at the air base located at the Baghdad International Airport. USAF official photo by Senior Master Sgt. Mark Moss

St. Paul -- Greeted by fresh snow, family and friends, the second wave of Airmen returned to Minnesota Feb. 20, 2011, following a six-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn. They were also honored by the Patriot Guard Riders who lined their way into the St. Paul Air National Guard Base.

The fifteen Airmen are members of the 133rd Security Forces Squadron and are the second of two groups of Minnesota Air Guard members returning from duty this month from Sather Air Base in Iraq. While participating in Operation New Dawn, the Airmen handled law enforcement duties and installation security for U.S. and host nation forces at the air base located at the Baghdad International Airport.

Currently, 43 Airmen are deployed from the 133rd Airlift Wing to countries across the world, including security forces personnel, aeromedical technicians, logisticians, judge advocate staff, communications specialists and Airmen from many other specialties. Many of these men and women are serving on their second, third or even more deployments.

In 2010, 133rd Airlift Wing deployed 473 Airmen to 11 countries in support of U.S. operations worldwide. Since September 11, 2001, the Wing has cumulatively deployed 5,440 Airmen to 33 countries in support of the Global War on Terror.

The 133rd Airlift Wing's C-130 "Hercules" transport aircraft supports many military missions, including airdrop and airland delivery of critical supplies, equipment and personnel to remote airfields and to areas not easily reached by ground travel. C-130s also provide aeromedical evacuation of wounded service members, where trained medical personnel provide timely, life-saving medical care while patients are transported to a medical facility.

The 133rd Airlift Wing is comprised of approximately 1,200 men and women who serve in support of state and national needs. They are your "Citizens Serving America ~ Airmen Defending Freedom."