PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN 6) — Thirty members of the Oregon Air National Guard returned home Sunday, just in time for the holidays.
The airmen and airwomen, mostly civil engineers and technicians, served in Afghanistan with the 142nd Fighter Wing, part of Operation Enduring Freedom.
John Kitzhaber was in attendance at the ceremony, held at the Portland Air National Guard base, although Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley — who were scheduled to attend — were represented instead by staffers.
“When the country calls, the Oregon Guard has always answered,” a Wyden staffer said in a prepared statement.
Tech Sgt. Shane Glenzer, a member of the 142nd Fighter Wing, said he is happy to be home for the holidays.
“It’s a great feeling to come home, [and] catch up what you’ve missed out on,” he said.
The months-long mission involved construction projects at airfields, and providing security and fire services.
“Really [you] don’t want to miss anything in reality, but the best you can do is to get home. The big holidays are great because it’s a time of family and everything,” he said.
His partner, Brenda Moss, had fewer words.
“It’s just great,” she said.