MOUNTAIN VIEW (KCBS) – Several dozen members of the Air National Guard’s 129th Rescue Wing have deployed to Afghanistan and the Horn of Africa.

They boarded a cargo plane at Moffett Field Thursday; it was filled with support equipment and a mission to save lives. That mission, they acknowledged, is a risky one.

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“When we do casualty evacuation, our goal is to get to the injured as soon as we can. Sometimes that means a firefight is still going on,” acknowledged one woman, a helicopter pilot taking a hiatus from her day job as an engineer at NASA Ames.

“God bless my husband, he’s going to deal with my three children, all under the age of four, for the next several months. Although my mom is helping but, having to live with your mother-in-law as well might also be a difficult situation for him,” she said. “I might have it easier in Afghanistan.”

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“We assure them we’re well trained and we’re doing a mission that is important and that needs to be done,” another guardsman explained how to comfort worried loved ones. “And that we’re helping other families get their loved ones home as well.”

This tour is expected to last four-and-a-half months; it is not the first deployment for a majority of them.

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