While many troops are returning, some are on their way out. More than 450 National Guard soldiers from North Dakota who were stationed at Fort Carson for 7 weeks said their farewells today.
Just a few short hours after the army post's gym was used to welcome home soldiers from the 3rd ACR, it was used to send off hundreds of soldiers from 141st Combat Engineer Battalion. They represent the second major call up of North Dakota troops since the war in Iraq began.
Families from small towns all over North Dakota chartered buses and car-pooled to send-off their troops.
One of those families is the Haugen family. Staff Sergeant Richard Haugen will go to Iraq while his wife, Tess, stays home to look after their 3 kids. She is trying to remain strong.
"Just saying goodbye is very hard. We're a very close family and it's just hard to know that you're not gonna see your father or husband for quite a long period of time."
Appropriately for Valentine's Day, 3 couples were married by the unit's Chaplin at the end of the ceremony.