BOISE, Idaho — The Idaho Army National Guard held a send-off event for the families of deploying 116th Cavalry Brigade Combat Team Soldiers Friday at Gowen Field.
The soldiers mobilizing will receive 45 days of additional training stateside before deploying overseas.
More than 250 personnel from the Idaho National Guard’s largest unit will deploy to Southwest Asia in support of Operation Spartan Shield. The brigade has trained for over a year in anticipation of this mobilization.
OSS is a joint mission under the United States Central Command and is part of Operation Enduring Freedom. Idaho Soldiers will comprise nearly 20 percent of the 116th CBCT task force during this rotation and will include other soldiers from Montana, Nevada and Oregon.
Additionally, personnel from the Florida Army National Guard will also fall under this task force.
“The Soldiers of the 116th are trained and ready to go,” said 116th CBCT Commander Lt. Col. Eric Orcutt. “I could not be more proud of these men and women and the efforts they’ve put forth in training and preparing for this mission. They are eager and they are focused and as always, they will achieve the highest level of success.”
This deployment is expected to last 12 months and is the first rotation of two the 116th CBCT is scheduled to support, with the second rotation in the summer of 2022.
The 116th Cavalry Brigade Combat Team previously deployed in support of the Global War on Terror in 2004 and 2010 to Iraq.
Idaho National Guard personnel have been supporting the state of Idaho throughout the COVID-19 pandemic as well as Idaho wildfires this past summer. More than 400 Idaho Air National Guardsmen were also deployed to Southwest Asia in the summer of 2020.