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Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance deplane after landing at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance deplane after landing at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

A daughter of one of the returning 7th Fighter Squadron pilots waves a flag while she waits to be reunited with her father on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Leah Murray/Released)

A daughter of one of the returning 7th Fighter Squadron pilots waves a flag while she waits to be reunited with her father on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Leah Murray/Released)

Technical Sgt Jonathan Cox, 49th Maintenance Group, deplanes and finally reunites with his family on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Leah Murray/Released)

Technical Sgt Jonathan Cox, 49th Maintenance Group, deplanes and finally reunites with his family on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Leah Murray/Released)

Friends and family await the return of the 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptors pilots with homemade signs and flags on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Leah Murray/Released)

Friends and family await the return of the 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptors pilots with homemade signs and flags on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Leah Murray/Released)

Friends and family await the return of around 200 Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance Group on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Friends and family await the return of around 200 Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance Group on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Colonel Andrew Croft, 49th Wing commander, welcomes back returning Airmen on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Colonel Andrew Croft, 49th Wing commander, welcomes back returning Airmen on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Colonel Andrew Croft, 49th Wing commander, welcomes back returning Airmen on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Colonel Andrew Croft, 49th Wing commander, welcomes back returning Airmen on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance Group deplane after landing at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance Group deplane after landing at Holloman Air Force Base, N.M., Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Friends and family await the return of around 200 Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance Group on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Friends and family await the return of around 200 Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and the 49th Maintenance Group on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and 49th Maintenance Group reunite with friends and family on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)
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Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and 49th Maintenance Group reunite with friends and family on the Holloman Air Force Base, N.M. flightline, Jan 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

A Senior Airman returning from deployment greets her daughter after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)
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A Senior Airman returning from deployment greets her daughter after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

Major Brandon Tellez, 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, greets his wife and 15-month-old son after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)
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Major Brandon Tellez, 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, greets his wife and 15-month-old son after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Michael Shoemaker/Released)

A child waves a U.S. flag and awaits the arrival of F-22 Raptors from a vehicle on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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A child waves a U.S. flag and awaits the arrival of F-22 Raptors from a vehicle on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

A child holds a sign for her father and awaits the arrival of F-22 Raptors on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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A child holds a sign for her father and awaits the arrival of F-22 Raptors on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

Four F-22 Raptors returning from deployment taxi toward a hangar on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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Four F-22 Raptors returning from deployment taxi toward a hangar on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

An F-22 Raptor returning from deployment taxis toward a hangar on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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An F-22 Raptor returning from deployment taxis toward a hangar on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

Captain Harrison Garlick, 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, greets awaiting friends and family after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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Captain Harrison Garlick, 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, greets awaiting friends and family after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

Captain Harrison Garlick 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, is greeted by Col. Andrew Croft, 49th Wing commander, after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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Captain Harrison Garlick 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, is greeted by Col. Andrew Croft, 49th Wing commander, after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

An F-22 Raptor pilot from the 7th Fighter Squadron prepares to exit the aircraft after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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An F-22 Raptor pilot from the 7th Fighter Squadron prepares to exit the aircraft after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. The aircraft and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

Returning Airmen de-plane and are greeted by 49th Wing leadership after arriving on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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Returning Airmen de-plane and are greeted by 49th Wing leadership after arriving on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

A Senior Airman returning from deployment greets her daughter after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force Photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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A Senior Airman returning from deployment greets her daughter after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force Photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

A woman and her daughter await returning Airmen on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force Photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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A woman and her daughter await returning Airmen on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force Photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

Major Brandon Tellez, 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, greets his wife and 15-month-old son after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28.  F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations.  (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)
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Major Brandon Tellez, 7th Fighter Squadron F-22 Raptor pilot, greets his wife and 15-month-old son after landing on the Holloman AFB, N.M., flightline Jan. 28. F-22 Raptors and around 200 personnel returned Monday from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia ensuring regional security and joint tactical air operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by 1st Lt. Stephanie Schonberger/Released)

HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- You could hear the anticipation in the air. The hum of the engines on the Boeing 767 was quieted by the excitement of an approaching reunion.

Multiple delays did little to dampen the spirits of friends, family and co-workers who showed up to Bldg. 908 to welcome back more than 200 Airmen from the 7th Fighter Squadron and 49th Maintenance Group from a 9-month deployment to Southwest Asia.

It was a short yet exciting walk from the aircraft ramp to the crowd of people gathered around the exit to the flightline. Some were reunited with their spouses and friends, while others held their children for the very first time, but all were happy to be home.

"While being deployed refocuses you on the mission, it starts to wear on people," said Lt. Col. Larry Broadwell, 7 FS commander. "But at some point you need to come home, you need to recharge the batteries, you need to go through a normal training cycle, and do things at home with the family."

Broadwell was enthusiastic about the success of their mission.

"I am extremely proud of the 7 FS and the 49 MXG. They set a string of firsts for the F-22," he said. "They did it from ground zero, and they did it for almost ten months. When the nation called and they needed someone to stand as a significant deterrent force in the Central Command area of responsibility, the 49th Wing and the F-22s from here did it."

With a successful mission behind them, the Airmen of the 7 FS and 49 MXG will have time to recharge, relax and regenerate before coming back to work and continuing to serve their country.

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