DULUTH, Minn. -

Almost 300 airmen from the 148th Fighter Wing of Duluth, Minnesota, have returned from their tour of duty at the Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.

Air Force Col. Frank H. Stokes is the 148th Fighter Wing Commander. He said during their mission, the airmen deployed F-16 aircraft and personnel to provide support or protection to coalition ground forces. He said they should be proud of their performance.

"The Bulldogs of the 148th Fighter Wing performed their mission impeccably,” Col. Stokes said.

Air Force Maj. Audra said this is the first major aviation deployment to Afghanistan for the 148th Fighter Wing. The group had been deployed to Joint Base Balad, Iraq in 2005, 2007 and 2008.