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Local guard unit headed for Missouri

By Staff
Clif Knight, Hartselle Enquirer
Hartselle's Alabama National Guard unit, 'C" Battery, 1-203rd Air Defense Artillery (Patriot) was mobilized last week in support of Operation Enduring Iraqi Freedom. It left Friday for Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. where it will undergo four weeks of training to convert from a Patriot missile to a military police unit.
Company Commander 1st Lt. Eric Aldridge said the order to mobilize was effective Aug. 2. Personnel had 72 hours to get their personal affairs in order and make other preparations to leave.
The unit will receive an active duty assignment following its training. A sending-off ceremony is scheduled Sept. 23.
"At this point we expect to be assigned to a mission within the continental United States," \Maj. Robert J. Cook, 1-ADA executive officer said, "Of course, that's subject to change depending on the needs of the Army at that time."
He said 'C" Battery's conversion means that it will have a military police mission from now on.
"It's a reflection of the changing needs of our armed forces not only in this nation but throughout the world," he pointed out.
Lieutenant Aldridge said the mobilization affects all of his unit's personnel who are physically qualified.
"Everyone is upbeat and ready for the mission," he added.

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