Airman Engaged Following Redeployment


Abilene, Texas (KRBC)- Dyess Air Force Based welcomed home over 80 airmen Wednesday.

“I can’t even put it into words. I’m so nervous. I can’t breathe,” said Kristina Mahler, whose boyfriend was deployed.

The excitement was palpable.

“Our heroes are returning back to home, to their family, back to Dyess,” said Lieutenant Colonel Mark Yarian.

The airmen were returning from Bagram, Afghanistan after four long months away from their loved ones.

“Just being away is the hardest part of any deployment,” said airman Samantha Masten.

And deployment isn’t just hard for the airmen.

“Just kind of being by yourself I think and not having your other half there with you for good times and bad,” said Nicole Stikeleather, whose husband was deployed.

The 317th Operations Support Squadron spent the last few months serving their country away from home.

“in this articular deployment, we moved over 8,500,000 pounds of cargo, 15,000 passengers, logged over 12,000 hours,” said Yarian.

And while everyone on the flight line was excited to see their loved one, one airman in particular had an extra special reunion: her boyfriend of two years, Alan Diffenbaugh, proposed.

“Well of course it’s already exciting enough to be coming home from deployment and then of course walking over here and then having him ask me that question was just unbelievable,” said Masten.


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