Soldier send off ceremony

Local Army and Air National Guard members are headed to Afghanistan to teach good farming practices.

Governor Dave Heineman, Congressman Jeff Fortenberry and a slew of other state dignitaries were on hand to send off 60 of Nebraska's soldiers and airmen Tuesday afternoon in an inspiring ceremony.

Staff Sergeant Ryan Parks says, “They're about 100 or 200 years behind us as far as technology, skills and the education that they have in agriculture, so they really need a country like the United States to come in and show them better practices that they can use to produce more food.”

Parks and his full family of admirers agree, who better than a group from cornfed farmland to help them out?  He says, “I'll try to communicate the good life here in Nebraska for them and how they can have it for themselves.”

The soldiers and airmen are expected to continue their training at Camp Atterbury, Indiana, before ultimately deploying to Afghanistan for one year.