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California National Guard Troops Preparing for Deployment to Afghanistan

Mar 5, 2013

Fifty California Guard troops and fifty from Nevada and Washington will take up medevac operations as part of Operation Enduring Freedom
Credit Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

The California Army National Guard is deploying about 50 soldiers as part of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.  

About a hundred medics, pilots and mechanics from California, Nevada, and Washington are flying out today. This is the third such deployment for Sylvester Wilson. He’s from Rancho Cordova, near Sacramento.

“There’s a 90 percent rate of guys who are picked up from the battlefield who get to come back home and actually return to duty. So, our job is important to get those guys back, whether it be American or even Allied forces, we’re going to get those guys to help,” says Wilson.

This is the first tour of this type for Specialist Ryan Waller. He’s an ambulance medic in Oakland. 

“In my day job, we see a lot more of the medical patients, and not so much of the traumas, so we’re expecting more traumas.  But as far as patient care, we’re gonna take the civilian model –what we’ve been doing out in the field and bring it into the military,” says Walker.

The units will train in Texas for two months and serve in Western Afghanistan for a year.