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News from the Oklahoma National Guard

NEWS | Dec. 30, 2023

Oklahoma aviation unit deploys to Kosovo

By Leanna Maschino, Oklahoma National Guard


In times like these, it’s crucial to embrace a warrior’s mentality—a spirit that is unyielding in the face of adversity, unwavering in its commitment to duty and unshakeable in its devotion to protecting the freedoms we hold dear.Capt. Jimmy Norvell, commander, Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment
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TULSA, Okla. – Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Dec. 30, 2023 at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations.

Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)
SLIDESHOW | images | 231230-A-OB588-4991 Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)
Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)
SLIDESHOW | images | 231230-A-OB588-5012 Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)
Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)
SLIDESHOW | images | 231230-A-OB588-3848 Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)
Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)
SLIDESHOW | images | 231230-A-OB588-2887 Loved ones gather alongside nearly 50 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen during a deployment ceremony held Saturday, Dec. 30, 2023, at the Army Aviation Support Facility 2 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion (Assault Helicopter Battalion), 244th Aviation Regiment, 90th Troop Command, will deploy overseas to Kosovo in support of Operation Joint Guardian (KFOR). KFOR is a NATO-led international peacekeeping force in Kosovo that is comprised of 27 partner nations. (Oklahoma National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)


“Thank you for answering the call,” said Col. Robert Walker, commander of 90th Troop Command. “Thank you for volunteering in the U.S. Army and the Oklahoma Army National Guard. To the family members, thank you for supporting these Soldiers--I know how much of a burden it is on you when we leave. Know that the mission matters and what we bring when we go somewhere is stability and safety for the people there.”

The 1-244th AHB, comprised of units from Louisiana (HHC), Iowa (MEDEVAC) and Oklahoma (AHB), will provide KFOR with 24/7 MEDEVAC coverage as well as air movement and air assault capabilities. The AHB specifically will provide the air transport and air assault capabilities with UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters throughout the area of operations.

“I am incredibly grateful for each of you and I am so proud of your resolve and your sacrifice and all that we have accomplished thus far,” said Capt. Jimmy Norvell, commander of Charlie Company, 1-244th AHB. “In times like these, it’s crucial to embrace a warrior’s mentality—a spirit that is unyielding in the face of adversity, unwavering in its commitment to duty and unshakeable in its devotion to protecting the freedoms we hold dear.”

The unit will move on to Fort Cavazos, Texas for post-mobilization training where they will be assessed prior to heading overseas. They are expected to return in Fall 2024.

Video by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck
Oklahoma Guard conducts annual Mechanic of the Year competition
Oklahoma National Guard
Feb. 7, 2024 | 1:36
Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen gathered to test their mechanical skills at the third annual Mechanic of the Year competition held at the Combined Support Maintenance Shop in Norman, Oklahoma, Feb. 7, 2024. (Oklahoma National Guard video by Staff Sgt. Reece Heck)

CG Information:
Chief Warrant Officer 4 Rocky Anderson
President of the Mechanic of the Year Board
More