Story by SSgt Melissa Dearstone on 07/08/2019JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR- HICKAM, Hawaii Over 80 Volunteer Airmen from the 134th Air Refueling Wing and 241st Engineering Installation Squadron traveled to Hawaii for an annual deployment for training here June 24-July 7.
Various units within the wing were able to train within their career field with local active duty and guard units.
"It's a great opportunity for us as Guardsmen to interact with our active duty counterparts and even some other guard units that we can work with because it allows us the opportunity to network," said the 134th Air Refueling Wing command chief, Chief Master Sgt. Stan Drozdowski.
Besides networking, the DFT provided Airmen the chance to work and learn new skills within their career field that they can take back to their home station and experience a new location.
Staff Sgt. Elisha White, 134th religious affairs Airman, said she enjoyed the opportunity to support the local active duty chaplain's mission in providing various services to the active duty and guard Airmen.
"The Airmen in the local chaplain's office were great to work with," said White. "The one thing I noticed was the camaraderie. Our home station already has a lot of it, but the active duty here has camaraderie like I have never seen before."
After the duty days were over, the Airmen were given the opportunity to explore the recreational activities around the island.
"We work hard, but we also have fun," said Drozdowski. "I hope the Airmen were able to learn some of the culture and see the scenery here so they are able to share their experiences with their families and other Airmen at home."
Staff Sgt. Ethan Richardson, communications focal point with the 134th Communications Squadron said that there was so much to see and and learn about the culture here.
"This trip was great," said Richardson. Some highlights of my trip would have to going to a luau, the Koko Crater Trail hike, and just being able to appreciate the views of Hawaii."
Drozdowski said that this trip was very successful and the Airmen were able to not only complete training, but also get to know one another.
"Thank you to everyone for working so hard during this DFT," said Drozdowski. "I've heard a lot of great things and stories from the Airmen and I think everyone has bonded very well during their time here."
The overall mission of this deployment was for the 134th Mission Support Group to obtain on the job training that they may not be able to receive at their home station and to work with the local active duty and guard units.