(3/12/14) Two units from the Wisconsin Army National Guard will deploy to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom this spring.
Sussex, Wis.-based Battery A of the 1st Battalion, 121st Field Artillery Regiment and the 829th Engineer Company, headquartered in Chippewa Falls, Wis., will both deploy on separate missions. The 829th Engineer Company has detachments in Ashland, Wis., and Richland Center, Wis.
Battery A's mission will be to provide artillery fire support for coalition forces operating in Afghanistan. They will become the second Wisconsin Army National Guard artillery battery to conduct a combat fires mission in Afghanistan after the Plymouth, Wis.-based Battery B of the 1st Battalion, 121st Field Artillery Regiment became the first in 2013. Approximately 80 Soldiers will deploy with the high mobility artillery rocket system unit.
Meanwhile the 829th will deploy more than 160 Soldiers to southern Afghanistan to conduct a deconstruction and material reclamation mission. The unit will be responsible for tearing down forward operating bases and reclaiming materials and equipment accumulated by coalition forces throughout the war. Their objective will be to deny the enemy use of those materials and to recover U.S. property.
Battery A previously deployed to Iraq in 2006-07 and in 2009-10. The 829th deployed to Iraq in 2003 and 2009. Both units will conduct pre-mobilization training at Fort Bliss, Texas, and both are part of the Milwaukee-based 157th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade.
The Wisconsin National Guard is currently planning sendoff ceremonies for both units and will announce that information as each unit's deployment draws near.