Small groups of troops are making their way home from southern Afghanistan, signaling the near end of a deployment for more than 3,500 soldiers in Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division.
The soldiers coming home now mostly represent advance parties from a yearlong deployment that began for most of the brigade’s subordinate units in December. It’s going to take several weeks to more than a month before you’ll see all of the 3rd Brigade back home in the South Sound.
Familiar faces are replacing the 3rd Brigade in Kandahar and Zabul provinces. Lewis-McChord’s 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division is on its way to Afghanistan for a nine-month deployment covering the same ground. Its battalions and companies are heading out in a long procession before the full brigade with more than 3,000 soldiers hits the ground some time next month.
Here’s one more homecoming hug for the road.