Almost 200 Minnesota-based soldiers are preparing to ship out to Iraq in two weeks.
The troops are U.S. Army Reservists with the Mankato-based 492nd Engineering Company.
Capt. Brad Hanson says there are a lot of new people in the unit who are fresh out of high school, so this will be their first deployment.
He says the soldiers have been training hard for the past few years and they're ready to put their skills to work.
About half the troops in the company have already been overseas. They deployed to Afghanistan in 2004 to help find and clear out explosives.
Their role in Iraq should be a little safer. Hanson tells The Free Press of Mankato they'll be focusing on construction projects to help the local civilian population.
Information from: The Free Press, http://www.mankatofreepress.com
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