Ft. Rucker Soldiers Deployed

By: Ben Stanfield Email
By: Ben Stanfield Email

Fort Rucker soldiers were deployed Friday to fight for our freedom overseas.

Cairns Airfield as the soldiers were preparing for the journey.

Cairns Airfield is tabbed as the busiest airfield in the Army, and Friday morning with the skies full of training helicopters, down below was a ceremony that will put that training to work.

The call came, for some it's the first time, for others it has become routine, the time to serve on foreign soil is here for the 1-58th Airfield Operations Batallion of Fort Rucker.

"I'm about to cry,” Kristie Nelson, wife of a deployed soldier said. “I want to cry. I want to go with them, but I’m glad they are already going. I'm glad that it's starting, but I want it to be over. They say its 12 months, but I pray that it's six."

The destination is Kuwait for some and Iraq for others.

"Ultimately, we train for it, we're ready for it,” Staff Sgt. Steven Kojima said. “Get our mission done and completed and come home safely is my main goal. It's always tougher to say goodbye to friends and family, but the one day you go on deployment you're one day closer to getting home."

The business of defending freedom is a tough job, and the battalion has been assigned to run air-traffic control operations while deployed in Iraq. The goal is to turn over the operation to Iraq before coming home.

"All of them are thinking about their family members right now,” Jorge Camara-Falu
“It's hard to say no bye, but see you later to family members. The most important thing we have to do is, in my case and all my soldiers are to support them from right here. (We pray for them) all the time. I just came back from out there. I know they have a big mission on their shoulders, but I know they are going to be successful in that one."

Friday the countdown began. The yellow ribbons will go up, and the Wiregrass will wait, pray, and wait some more for our soldiers return.

Almost 60 soldiers are deploying today. If all goes as planned they should be home close to Valentines Day 2012.

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