abc
QUICK LINKS:

148th Members Home After Weeks of NATO Training

Updated: 06/20/2014 6:40 PM
Created: 06/20/2014 5:09 PM WDIO.com
By: Travis Dill
tdill@wdio.com

It was a dreary day to fly into Duluth, but members of the 148th Fighter Wing are savoring their homecoming despite the weather. They landed Friday afternoon after a 5-week training exercise with NATO partners in Europe.

“It was a long flight, 9 and a half hours, and we almost missed it because of the weather,” Master Sgt. Jason Swor said.

Fog hung on the runway and a chill lingered in the breeze as he embraced his three daughters on the tarmac. He said he was ready for a Sammy's pizza with his daughters and all the emotion that comes with it.

“Joy,” Swor said. “Fantastic, good to see the girls, and I'm going to go surprise my wife at Maurices. She doesn't know I'm home.”

The airmen worked with NATO Air Force partners in Bulgaria and Estonia according to Lt. Col. Nathan Aysta.

“Our maintenance people and our jets were located on the same flight line, as you see here, next to the Bulgarians so there was interaction every day amongst our two countries' military members,” Aysta said.

He said the military units have to be prepared to work together in an emergency and the training comes in handy when you're coordinating jets. The 148th brough F-16s with them for the exercise while their Bulgarian counterparts flew MiG-29s.

Aysta said some members did get a chance to experience Europe in their downtime.

“Then out in Estonia, a lot of the members went up to Tallinn and Helsinki so really got to experience the local culture and community,” Aysta said.

He said flying home into fog wasn't tough after the weather abroad.

“We even saw a little bit of sleet and snow on one of the last days there so coming back to Duluth it wasn't that big of a difference from Estonia,” Aysta said.

He called the exercise a success and said the Airmen are now better prepared to protect us and our allies abroad.

Front Page

  • Scannell Case in Jury's Hands

    The case against Cook County Attorney Tim Scannell is now in the hands of a jury after closing arguments took place Thursday afternoon. The jury began deliberations at just after 5 p.m. and will not be sequestered if they don't reach a verdict this evening.

  • Wisconsin Makes Minnesota Offer on Tax Reciprocity

    The neighboring states have been unable to reach a deal since a 40-year agreement expired in 2009. An agreement would simplify income taxes for the roughly 80,000 who live in one state and work in the other.

  • Minn. DNR Increases Target Wolf Harvest

    The Minnesota DNR is increasing the target harvest for this fall's wolf hunt from 250 to 280. The DNR says the latest population survey estimates that there were 2,423 wolves living in Minnesota this past winter, which is 212 more animals than estimated the previous winter.

  • Update: Teen Killed in Douglas Co. Crash

    The Douglas County Sheriff's Office says a Lake Nebagamon teenager was killed in a two-vehicle crash on Wednesday afternoon.  15-year-old Seth N. Stariha, a passenger in one of the vehicles, was pronounced dead at the scene.

  • Workers at the NOvA hall in Ash River assemble the final block of the far detector in early February 2014, with the nearly completed detector in the background. U of M Reaches Milestone with Ash River Neutrino Detector

    The University of Minnesota is celebrating a milestone in creating an experimental particle detector that it says could eventually yield important information about the beginning of the universe.

 

Flood Warning

MN AREAS AFFECTED: Koochiching; St. Louis
Expires: 7/25/2014 4:00 PM

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement