Sparta National Guard Firefighting Team headed to Iraq - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Sparta National Guard Firefighting Team headed to Iraq

(Source: Rob Foote, KFVS) (Source: Rob Foote, KFVS)

A southern Illinois National Guard unit will soon deploy to Iraq.

A ceremony will be held at the Sparta Fire Station on Wednesday, Oct. 18 at 11 a.m.

The 661st Engineer Detachment Firefighting Team is based in Sparta, Illinois.

The unit will train at Fort Bliss, Texas briefly before deploying to Iraq.

Soldiers from the unit will be responsible for aircraft rescue firefighting operations and structural firefighting operations in support of Operation Inherent Resolve.

According to the National Guard, this is the first Iraq deployment for an Illinois National Guard unit since 2011-12.

The unit is expected to return in the summer of 2018.

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