Airmen leave Scotia bound for Antarctica

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Airmen from the Air National Guard 109th Airlift Wing in Scotia are on their way to Antarctica, to help scientists as part of Operation Deep Freeze.

Five aircraft lifted off from Stratton Air National Guard Base on Thursday, heading for New Zealand, and then to Antarctica. They will refuel and set up operations to bring supplies to the National Science Foundation Base at the South Pole.

The 109th is the only unit in the Department of Defense with special ski planes that can land on the snow and ice.

The mission will last four months. The crew returns home in February.

Crews from the 109th have supported Operation Deep Freeze since 1988.