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Airmen return home from Iraq

FARGO - Sixteen airmen from the North Dakota Air National Guard's 119th Wing returned home Saturday after serving a few months in Iraq. Members of the 119th maintenance squadron and operations squadron were deployed with the Duluth, Minn.-based 1...

FARGO - Sixteen airmen from the North Dakota Air National Guard's 119th Wing returned home Saturday after serving a few months in Iraq.

Members of the 119th maintenance squadron and operations squadron were deployed with the Duluth, Minn.-based 148th Fighter Wing in February. They worked at the Balad Air Base in Iraq on such things as aircraft maintenance and radar systems.

Fifteen of the soldiers returned to Fargo on Saturday afternoon via bus. One of the soldiers was dropped off in Detroit Lakes, Minn., said Capt. Penny Ripperger, a Guard spokeswoman.

Thirty-four members of the 119th are still serving overseas in Iraq and several other countries, she said.

In Grand Forks, a ceremony was held Saturday afternoon to honor the 39 Army Guard soldiers who served in Afghanistan with the 188th Air Defense Artillery's J-LENS group. They returned home in February after nearly a year on duty in Afghanistan.

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- Associated Press

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