EDGEWOOD, Md. - Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown bid farewell to 3rd Battalion, 176th Aviation Regiment of the Maryland Army National Guard at a deployment ceremony at Aberdeen Proving Ground on Tuesday, May 29, 2007. The unit of approximately 50 soldiers left for Fort Carson, Colorado for training prior to overseas deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
"I am extremely proud of these men and women who represent the best of Maryland," said Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown. "Their service and sacrifice to our state and our country is an example to all of our citizens and worthy of emulation. Governor O'Malley and I thank them and their families for their service and dedication."
The 176th Aviation Regiment is a newly created unit established as part of the Army transformation in 2005 and includes companies from several states. The soldiers will spend approximately three months at Fort Carson processing and conducting additional training prior to deploying overseas. Fort Carson affords the deploying soldiers the opportunity to conduct training exercises in CH-47 Chinook helicopters at high altitudes, preparing for the conditions they will face in Afghanistan.
There are currently approximately 1,180 members of the Maryland National Guard deployed in support of missions across the nation and around the world. Since Sept. 11, 2001, nearly 6,500 Maryland Citizen-Soldiers and Citizen-Airmen have been mobilized and deployed.