Ga. citizen-soldiers honored before Afghan mission

SPRINGFIELD, Ga. (AP) - The people of Effingham County are throwing a sendoff parade for about 100 of their citizen-soldiers heading to Afghanistan with the Georgia National Guard's 48th Brigade.

The southeast Georgia county west of Savannah is encouraging residents to turn out and cheer their local guardsmen today as they travel a 15-mile parade route before embarking for Camp Shelby, Miss.

The troops will finish up their training in Mississippi before deploying to Afghanistan next month.

About 2,400 Georgia guardsman from across the state are deploying with the 48th Brigade to Afghanistan, where they will help train Afghan police and security forces. The Macon-based brigade last went to war in 2005 for a yearlong tour in Iraq.

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