National Guard Soldiers return from year-long deployment in Iraq

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welcome-home-troopsMore than 270 soldiers of the 1498th Transportation Company in Riverside, Calif., will celebrate their return from a 12-month tour in Kuwait and Iraq at a homecoming ceremony Saturday, July 18, here in Long Beach. Soldiers will be arriving by plane at 7:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. to the airport. Ceremony will follow at 10:00 a.m.

During their deployment, the Soldiers conducted logistical missions transporting materials throughout Iraq. Utilizing the Heavy Equipment Transporter (HET), the largest truck in the Army inventory, members of the 1498th transported various equipment and supplies, including essential provisions, equipment and inoperable materials and tanks hit by improvised explosive devices (IEDs). These large HET trucks are capable of transporting items as large as the M1 Battle Tank to forward operating locations in need of equipment.

The 1498th Transportation Company provided HET support throughout the Iraq and Kuwait Theater of Operations completing 123 combat logistics patrols, 24 transportation missions within Kuwait and 35 lead HET missions, hauling more than 180,000 tons and traveling more than 1.9 million miles.

The 1498th Transportation Company was activated in November 2002 in Riverside, Calif. The mission of the 1498th Transportation Company is to mobilize and deploy to provide self-secured heavy equipment transportation support of the battlefield. Citizen-Soldiers from the 1498th Transportation Company live in cities throughout California including Sacramento, South Los Angeles, Long Beach and Riverside area.

During the homecoming an award ceremony will take place to decorate many of the unit members with a variety of awards including the Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal and Army Achievement Medal.

Members of the media and community are invited to attend the arrival of these dedicated servicemembers who will be greeted by their families at the Air Flight Hangar in Long Beach located at 3280 Airflite Way, Long Beach, CA, 90807.

For more information or to attend the ceremony, please call Laura Herzog at 714-904-0253.

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