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Travis AFB supports Cyclone Idai relief efforts

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. James Hodgman
  • 60th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

Two C-17 Globemaster III crews assigned to the 21st Airlift Squadron from Travis Air Force Base arrived in Djibouti April 5 to aid Cyclone Idai relief efforts.

The cyclone was a Category 2 storm that hit the port city of Beira, Mozambique, March 15, with winds at speeds up to 110 mph. The storm, which is the worst to hit Mozambique in three decades, killed more than 800 people. It left several villages submerged in water before moving inland to Zimbabwe and Malawi.

“A lot of bad things happen on the planet--war, disease, famine, natural disaster … but we are all citizens of the world, we care and we are there to help,” said Lt. Col. Steven Nolan, 21st AS director of operations. “When disaster strikes, no matter where it is, the United States, Air Mobility Command, the U.S. Air Force and our Airmen are ready, willing and able to help.”

Travis AFB is supporting the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, which is leading the Department of Defense support to relief efforts in Mozambique, after a call for assistance from the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Disaster Assistance Response Team.

“We received a request for two crews to support relief efforts in Mozambique on March 28 and a few days later we had those crews on a C-17 bound for Africa,” Nolan said. “We are providing Rapid Global Mobility; the support that’s needed, at the right place and the right time.”

“The people affected by this disaster need help, whether that’s food, shelter or something else and our Airmen are out there delivering hope,” Nolan added.

According to various news reports about the cyclone, more than 100,000 people have lost their homes and more than 2 million people have been affected by the storm.

To date, the team from Travis AFB, utilizing a C-17 from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, has helped deliver more than 17,000 pounds of food, a forklift, a 25K loader and palletizing equipment from the United States Agency for International Development.