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More than 600 National Guard soldiers are back on Hoosier soil

Spent nine-months in Middle East
Posted at 6:01 PM, Apr 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-07 18:02:20-04

INDIANAPOLIS -- They're back!

More than 600 Indiana National Guard soldiers who spent the last nine-months in the Middle East are home with their families.

According to information from the National Guard, the 38th Infantry Division was assisting "Task Force Spartan, helping to provide a U.S. military leadership and command in the Middle East while strengthening defense relationships and building partner capacity."

The division had to make a detour on the way home, stopping at Fort Hood in Texas for a two-week pandamic quarantine.

"I saw in our leadership, and in our country's leadership, positive steps that were taken to prevent future [violence] and ensure security in the region," said 1st Lt. Blake Dull, aide-de-camp to Task Force Spartan's deputy commanding general of support.

"To see our training, preparation and the execution of that training carried out in the field - it gave me a better understanding and appreciation for the training we do here at home," added Dull.

"Our mission was to help build military power in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and deter any kind of aggression in the theater of operations that was taking place," said Cpt. Gene Harding, 38th Infantry Division battle captain and chief of operations in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.