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45th Deployment Ceremony

Fort Sill, Ok_Families of the 45th fires brigade from the Oklahoma National Guard filled Rinehart's gym at Fort Sill, Thursday, to attend a deployment ceremony for 80 service members.

The soldiers are deploying to Afghanistan for one year and although loved ones are sad to be apart from their families, they know that they will be well taken care of by a support system at Fort Sill.

The Oklahoma National Guard has a family assistance program at Fort Sill to help these family members with anything they may need.  "We have a great FRG system and I just got the information from the leader of it," said military wife Charlene Dorsey.  

Family Assistance Specialist Rhonda Williams said she's the connection to help these families with making the adjustment.  "We do a family outreach to them once a month because Oklahoma National Guard is really concerned about the well being of their soldiers and the well being of their family members," said Williams.

She said the program is important not only to help them get through their everyday lives but to ease their minds.  "The soldiers are trained to do their mission and a lot of times uh when they're gone. Like they're going over to Afghanistan, so the family members have anxieties, they...the fear of the unknown. So we are here to support them," Williams said.

The program also plans events with the families during the holidays and takes pictures to send back to their loved ones.   The program not only helps the families get through the deployment--it also helps the family prepare for the return of their soldiers.

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