One Last Time

Members of the 603rd Air Control Squadron at Aviano AB, Italy, deployed last week in support of operations in Southwest Asia. This marked the unit’s final deployment before it stands down in spring 2013, stated Aviano officials in a July 9 release. “I’m incredibly proud and honored to be the commander of these fine men and women as they perform their final duties as Scorpions,” said Lt. Col. Stephen Caroccci, 603rd ACS commander. “Although we are inactivating the 603rd, the squadron isn’t viewing this as the end, just a closing of a chapter.” More than 20 officers and 280 enlisted airmen spanning more than 20 specialty codes make up the squadron, which is responsible for providing command and control to air assets around the globe. The 603rd ACS provides one of two Air Force theater air control systems in Europe. Its planned inactivation is part of service-wide cost-saving measures. (Aviano report by SSgt. Ryan Whitney)