North Dakota National Guard Unit Prepares for Deployment - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

North Dakota National Guard Unit Prepares for Year-Long Deployment

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A small North Dakota National Guard unit is now being sent to Afghanistan for a year-long deployment.

This is the sendoff ceremony for eight aviation soldiers with the Guard's Detachment 42 Organizational Support Airlift.

Governor Jack Dalrymple says the unit will provide aerial surveillance that will save lives on the ground.

Members of "Det 42" have deployed to Afghanistan, and Djibouti Africa previously in support of the Global War on Terrorism.

Of the eight soldiers on this mission, six have deployed before.

Whether it's their first or fourth deployment, it's never easy to say goodbye to loved ones for a year.

Of the eight in the unit, you will notice the name Bridwell twice.

Two brothers deploying together for the second time.

"They both went into the military because they respect what their dad did." says Kate Bridwell/Mother of two sons deploying.

"It would be easier for me to go, than to see my kids go, but it's what we do." says Ric Bridwell/Father of two sons deploying.

Travis and Tyler Bridwell had previously served together in Djibouti Africa.

"It's nice to have them watching each other's back, they've flown together a long time." says Ric.

Making it easier, a huge turnout of military supporters.

"It's just nice to know that people care, and know what's going." says Ric.

"It'll be hard, but always be good when you come home." says Travis.

The Bismarck-based unit leave for Camp Atterbury Indiana mid-February before departing overseas.

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