Air Guard opens new combat training runway

It’s a 3,500-foot-long stretch of cement with a few hundred feet added on, just in case. That’s not much space on which to safely land a heavily loaded, half-million-pound cargo plane, but officials here say it’s the perfect runway for Mississippi Air National Guard pilots to train on.

Mississippi National Guard members and special guests gathered in the summer heat at the Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center here July 9 to cut a yellow ribbon for the Air National Guard’s first C-17 Globemaster III assault landing training facility.

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Air Guard crew flies mission to save Soldier’s life

BALAD AIR BASE, Iraq (AFNEWS) — They flew at night and into the next day from Iraq nonstop to the United States. Fifteen hours and 10 time zones later, they handed over their precious cargo in Maryland: a Soldier who had been wounded in combat.

Then, to the hum of jet engines, they packed their gear and returned to fly similar missions again and again.

Members of the Air National Guard flew directly from Balad Air Base, Iraq, to Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Feb. 7 to transport a critically injured Soldier to stateside medical personnel in an effort to save his life.

The Soldier had sustained life-threatening injuries from an improvised explosive device. His best chances for survival were in the hands of neurologists thousands of miles away.

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