National Guard unit from Sand Springs heads to Louisiana

Friday, September 2nd 2005, 10:11 am
By: News On 6

Members of the Oklahoma Army National Guard deployed in a long convoy of trucks Friday morning. They are answering the call for help in Louisiana.

The entire 45th Infantry Brigade is going. The News on 6 was there as one of three infantry battalions left Sand Springs Friday morning.

News on 6 anchor Lori Fullbright says members of the Oklahoma Army National Guard are loading up truckload after truckload of supplies as they get ready to go to Louisiana. Ellen Mize and her kids are just hoping for a quick hug good-bye before dad takes off to the disaster area. "I'm worried. I'm going to pray everyday and just rely on God to watch over all of them."

Families and soldiers alike know all too well the conditions they will be facing and are ready to sacrifice in order to help their fellow countrymen. Oklahoma Army National Guard Captain Michael McKiddy: "Seeing the pictures helps galvanize the soldiers going down there and the significance of what they're going to be doing."

They are headed to Alexandria, Louisiana and don't know yet what their job will be or even how long they'll be gone. They've heard everything from 10 days to one month. They're ready for anything because many of these folks just got back from a deployment in Afghanistan a year ago. This mission certainly hits closer to home. "I think that's one of the most important things the National Guard can provide for our country. Situations like this, we have the capability to get down there and rapidly get on site and perform a variety of missions, do what needs to be done."

They are leaving their families and regular jobs at home, and in addition to taking their supplies and training, they're taking with them, the promise that this country will persevere through this tragedy.

About 70 trucks left Sand Springs Friday. They expect to do everything from keeping order to rescuing those still trapped in the floodwaters.