Photo Information

Sgt. Mark Gonzales, a data network specialist with Marine Air Control Squadron 2, embraces his family before departing for Afghanistan.

Photo by Pfc. Unique B. Roberts

MACS-2 departs for Afghanistan

20 Jun 2013 | Pfc. Unique B. Roberts

More than 65 Marines with Marine Air Control Squadron 2 departed Cherry Point for Afghanistan June 16.

During a 7-month deployment, MACS-2 will provide the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, the lead aviation combat element in southwestern Afghanistan, with air control.

In order to fulfill their mission, the Marines will do everything possible to ensure aircraft can navigate through air space successfully, said Lt. Col. Jeffery D. Hanson, MCAS-2 commanding officer.

“We are tremendously honored here, at MCAS-2, to be able to support a mission like this. It is critical to the Marine Corps and to the United States of America,” said Hanson. “Our Marines have been doing this successfully for the past six months and we’ll

continue to do it successfully over the next months until the mission ends.”

While in Afghanistan, MACS-2 will play a critical role in routing aircraft not only on airfields, but through the air space as well.

“It is imperative that the mission is successful,” said Hanson.

Although the Marines are venturing off in support of a new mission, they are already coping with issues like being away from their family. 

Sgt. Mark Gonzales, a data network specialist with MACS-2, said it was hard to part with his wife and children before leaving for Afghanistan.

 “Seeing him leave is sad. I’m in the Marine Corps too so I get it, he has to leave,” said his wife Lance Cpl. Stephanie Gonzales, a combat videographer with Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 2. “I have all the confidence in him. I see how he handles his Marines and they are a family so I know they are going to be okay.”  

Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point