Airman photo: U.S. Air Force

A South Jersey Airman is now part of a significant moment that will go down in history. And it was captured on film.

Airman First Class Nicolas Baron, assigned to Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, was part of the mission to evacuate residents from Afghanistan last summer. During the flight back to the U.S., Baron had hung up the camouflage shirt from his uniform, but didn’t realize it had fallen. An Afgan mother sitting next to her sleeping son, pulled the shirt onto her child as a blanket. A photo of the child was snapped, widely circulated and praised for its depiction of the humanitarian effort. Baron has donated his shirt to the National History Museum of the U.S. Air Force, which is collecting items used in the massive airlift. The museum is in Ohio and sees 1 million visitors each year.

Airman First Class Nicholas Baron, 305th Air Mobility Wing Loadmaster, holds his blouse for the last time before donating it to the National History Museum of the U.S. Air Force at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., Oct. 12, 2021. Baron’s blouse will go on to be a symbol of Operation Allies Refuge and the humanitarian efforts that were made. (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sergeant Shay Stuart)

April 2022
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