689th CCW welcomes returning members from Haiti mission

Col. Theresa Giorlando, 689th Combat Communications Wing welcomes home Staff Sgt. Jon Hutchins, 53rd Combat Communications Squadron Deployable Initial Communications Element Team from his deployment to Haiti March 16. Sergeant Hutchins was the network specialist on the DICE Team that deployed to Haiti for six weeks providing expeditionary communications, in support the humanitarian effort - Operation Unified Response.

Col. Theresa Giorlando, 689th Combat Communications Wing welcomes home Staff Sgt. Jon Hutchins, 53rd Combat Communications Squadron Deployable Initial Communications Element Team from his deployment to Haiti March 16. Sergeant Hutchins was the network specialist on the DICE Team that deployed to Haiti for six weeks providing expeditionary communications, in support the humanitarian effort - Operation Unified Response. (US Air Force photo by 2nd Lt Joel Cooke)

Col. Theresa Giorlando, 689th Combat Communications Wing welcomes home the 53rd Combat Communications Squadron Deployable Initial Communications Element Team team after their six-week deployment supporting operations in Haiti, as 5th Combat Communications Group Commander, Col. Jose Rivera looks on.

Col. Theresa Giorlando, 689th Combat Communications Wing welcomes home the 53rd Combat Communications Squadron Deployable Initial Communications Element Team team after their six-week deployment supporting operations in Haiti, as 5th Combat Communications Group commander, Col. Jose Rivera looks on. (US Air Force photo by 2nd Lt Joel Cooke)

Chief Master Sgt. Shawn Wise, 5th Combat Communications Group superintendent formally ends the welcome back gathering March 16 with the call of 'Fifth Mob!' The 5th MOB welcomed back members of the 53rd Combat Communications Squadron Deployable Initial Communications Element Team after their six-week deployment supporting operations in Haiti providing expeditionary communications, in support the humanitarian effort - Operation Unified Response.

Chief Master Sgt. Shawn Wise, 5th Combat Communications Group superintendent formally ends the welcome back gathering March 16 with the call of 'Fifth Mob!' The 5th MOB welcomed back members of the 53rd Combat Communications Squadron Deployable Initial Communications Element Team after their six-week deployment supporting operations in Haiti providing expeditionary communications, in support the humanitarian effort - Operation Unified Response. (US Air Force photo by 2nd Lt Joel Cooke)

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. -- Six members of the 53rd Combat Communications Squadron Deployable Initial Communications Element Team, or DICE Team, returned March 16 from a six-week deployment to Haiti, where the team supported Operation Unified Response, a humanitarian effort to assist Haiti after the devastating earthquake.

The team consisted of Capt. Joel Nelson, Tech. Sgt Turvon Casey, Staff Sgts. Jon Hutchins, Jerome Graham and Trenton Morgan, and Senior Airman Travis Meyer. The team deployed to Haiti to provide communications support including phones, internet and video feeds to the Air Force Expeditionary Medical Support unit deployed there.
The team also boosted morale by providing both internet access and the ability to make phone calls to the states for hundreds of deployed members in the area.

The DICE team also assisted the EMEDS during their deployment, assisting with bringing patients to and from their camp and to the Navy hospital ship, the USNS Comfort. During the team's deployment the EMEDS unit treated more than 2,500 patients.

The team also engaged in joint operations at the Port au Prince Airport with sister unit, the 3rd Herd (3rd Combat Communications Group) from Tinker AFB, Okla. They were also able to share their invaluable expeditionary knowledge to other service members down there, through various on the spot training to those who needed it.