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119TH WING MISSION

Posted 4/1/2008 Printable Fact Sheet
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The mission of the North Dakota Air National Guard is two-fold. Its state mission, under the command of the Governor, is to support state and local authorities in civil emergencies. Under the federal mission, the unit is available for mobilization and immediate integration into the U.S. Air Force. The unit has been tasked to perform its state mission on many occasions. Prominent examples include Operation Haylift in 1949, providing relief to blizzard-bound farms and ranches, and more recently, Operation Snowball and Operation Good Neighbor in 1997, to combat unprecedented winter snowfall and spring flooding conditions throughout North Dakota. Federalization of the North Dakota Air National Guard occurred during the Korean Conflict, with the unit mobilized and ordered to active duty in 1951, returning to Fargo and state control in 1953. It also occurred following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 when hundreds of airmen were voluntarily recalled to active duty status for Operation Noble Eagle, under the North American Aerospace Defense Command and the "all States agreement. 

"Air Defense alert has been a major part of the North Dakota Air National Guard's tasking since September 1953. The unit provided alert coverage at Fargo, with either two or four aircraft continuously on status, until March 1990 when home station alert was discontinued. Other alert sites include March Air Reserve Base, California, and Kingsley Field, near Klamath Falls, Oregon. The most recent permanent alert detachment was at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia with 36 full-time personnel operating aircraft maintenance, munitions, supply, administrative and operational command responsibilities. The detachment closed in October 2006 due to the new C-21 mission of the North Dakota Air National Guard. 

The first overseas deployment of the North Dakota Air Guard occurred in 1983, with six F-4s and 120 support personnel deploying to Keflavik, Iceland. Eight Russian TU-95 Bear bombers were intercepted by Hooligan pilots during the deployment. In 1986, the 119th Fighter Group became the first core unit to
assume the USAF Zulu alert mission at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. Referred to as "Creek Klaxon," the 119th and other Air Defense units stood continuous alert for one year providing air sovereignty in Europe for NATO. During Desert Storm, 107 Happy Hooligans were mobilized and deployed in support of operations at numerous CONUS locations. The C-130 support aircraft assigned to the North Dakota Air National Guard and aircrew also provided stateside airlift of crucial, war-related personnel and equipment to support Desert Storm. Most recently, after Hurricane Katrina destroyed the gulf coast, the 119th Fighter Wing answered the call for assistance, responding with less than forty-eight hours notice and deployed 64 personnel from the Civil Engineering Squadron, prepared 251.5 short tons of equipment and supplies and loaded three C-5A and one C-130H transport aircraft for deployment to Gulfport, Mississippi, to build and support the tent city required to house over 2,000 National Guard relief workers. The Services Flight also prepared over 210,000 meals over a 60 day period for the relief workers.







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