Oklahoma Guardsmen Prepare For Middle East Deployment
TULSA, Oklahoma - Some of Oklahoma's Own will soon be on their way to the Middle East to help in the fight against ISIS.
The Army National Guard took off Saturday in their Blackhawks.
The soldiers will take about 10 Blackhawks down to Fort Hood, Texas where they'll train for a few months before their mission overseas.
It was a day full of mixed emotions as 60 Oklahoma Army National Guardsmen prepared to deploy.
They'll join about 120 soldiers with the Louisiana National Guard before heading to the Middle East.
First Sergeant Anthony Ballone held his granddaughter Vivian, just six months old, before his third deployment.
"The faster we get going, the faster we come back home." Said Sergeant Michael Bordofske of the Oklahoma National Guard.
This is his first deployment and he's enjoying a laugh with the ones he loves.
"I'm really excited. I'm ready to get this show on the road." He said.
His parents feel both nervous and proud as he prepares to leave.
That includes Meisha Floyd, his fiancé.
"We're gonna get married on November 4th when I come home," Bordofske said.
The deployment could last between 9 months and a year with a possible trip home for Thanksgiving.
"It's gonna be a big trial, it's gonna be a tough one, but she's a great girl and I’m really excited to come home to her,” Bordofske said.
Before the Crew Chief takes off, he takes comfort in knowing he has the support of someone who isn't even in the crowd.
A child who took the time to write a card.
“You are brave and I love you. We love you … and 'you are my hero.” The card said.
"God be with him. Keep him safe" Bordofske’s father said.