Midlands guard unit deploying to Afghanistan

rburris@thestate.comFebruary 22, 2013 

— A unit of the South Carolina National Guard’s 122nd Engineer Battalion will deploy to Afghanistan for approximately a year, the Guard said Friday.

The battalion will hold a departure ceremony and casing of the colors for the approximately 150 deploying soldiers Saturday at Lexington High School.

The ceremony will begin promptly at 10 a.m. in the gymnasium of the high school, located at 2463 Augusta Highway, in Lexington.

From South Carolina, the deploying unit of the Edgefield-based 122nd battalion will travel to Texas for training, prior to departing for Afghanistan, the Guard said.

This will not be the battalion’s first call to duty, military officials said.

Elements of the 122nd Engineer Battalion were deployed to Iraq in 2003, 2005 and in 2009, according to Maj. Gen. Robert E. Livingston Jr., South Carolina adjutant general, and to Afghanistan in 2010.

“Having commanded this unit both at the company and battalion level, I am extremely proud of the dedication and sacrifice of these soldiers and their families,” Livingston said in a statement released about the deployment.

The 122nd Engineer unit’s mission will be to train Afghan National Army Engineer units, perform construction and deconstruction operations, and conduct route clearance in support of the drawdown of U.S. forces, the Guard said.

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