Oklahoma soldiers headed for Afghanistan

BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Modified: February 16, 2011 at 7:37 am •  Published: February 16, 2011
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Family members and friends will converge on Oklahoma City for a farewell ceremony for more than 3,200 Oklahoma National Guard members headed for Afghanistan.

Officials say because a large number of people are anticipated, Wednesday morning's ceremony will be held in two locations.

The ceremony for the 160th Field Artillery, 179th Infantry, 279th Infantry, 180th Cavalry, 700th Brigade Support Battalion and 146th Air Support Operation Squadron will be at the Oklahoma City Arena. The ceremony for the 45th Infantry Brigade Combat Team and the Oklahoma Stabilization Transition Teams is at the Cox Convention Center.

Guard officials say the 45th will conduct offensive, defensive and civil support operations. The 146th will provide Air Force liaison support to the 45th and the transition teams will be combat advisers to the Afghan army.