Approximately 200 Soldiers from the Wisconsin Army National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 128th Infantry are slated to return to Wisconsin today after a yearlong mobilization to Afghanistan.
Due to restrictions stemming from COVID-19, a traditional homecoming ceremony was not possible today, but senior leaders from the Wisconsin National Guard will greet the Soldiers when their plane arrives. The troops will then return via bus to local Wisconsin Army National Guard armories in Menomonie, River Falls, Arcadia, and Eau Claire where their families will greet them. Their plane landed in Eau Claire at approximately 1 p.m.
The 128th mobilized in July 2019 to replace their fellow Red Arrow brethren – the 2nd Battalion, 127th Infantry – in Afghanistan.
The Wisconsin National Guard continues to maintain a high operations tempo in support of both its federal and state missions. Hundreds ofWof National Guard troops continue their deployments overseas serving as the primary combat reserve for the Army and Air Force, while hundreds of Citizen Soldiers and Airmen continue supporting the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic here in Wisconsin.
Approximately 150 Soldiers of the 829th Engineer Company continue operations across the Middle East and Afghanistan. The 924th Engineer Facilities Detachment and the 1967th Contracting Team also mobilized for deployments to Kuwait and the Horn of Africa respectively in January.
Meanwhile, more than 1000 Wisconsin National Guard troops are serving in Wisconsin establishing COVID-19 mobile testing sites.