OLIVE HILL —
A detachment of 150 Kentucky National Guardsmen from Olive Hill and Cynthiana will leave this month for Afghanistan to spend the year constructing buildings.
The last trip to Afghanistan for members of the 149th Vertical Construction Company, a unit of the 201st Engineer Battalion, was spent clearing mines from roadways in the battle-torn country. This tour leads off with going-away ceremonies Saturday at Cynthiana and Sunday at Olive Hill. The detachment leaves Feb. 11 for a month of in-country training before heading for Afghanistan.
They are expected to be among the last groups returning from that country as the U. S. makes its final pull-out at the end of the year.
Capt. Adam Evans, commanding officer of the unit, said crews will erect barracks, offices, maintenance buildings and other structures. "Our specialties are masonry, carpentry, electrical work." He said some of the citizen-soldiers are professional builders, which enhances their effectiveness for the job.
"We have a well-trained, highly motivated unit, very effective," Evans said.