Nearly 20 Soldiers mobilize April 5 as part of an embedded training team

SPRINGFIELD, IL (04/02/2014)(readMedia)-- A deployment ceremony is scheduled for 16 Soldiers who will deploy to Afghanistan as part of an embedded training team. The ceremony for the Bilateral Embedded Staff Team (BEST) A13 will be April 5 at 9 a.m. at Camp Lincoln, 1301 N. MacArthur Blvd. in Springfield, Ill.

The BEST Soldiers have conducted more than 24 days of pre-mobilization training at Joint Base McGuire Dix Lakehurst, N.J. and will spend an additional 40 days training in Poland before deploying to Afghanistan. Following the training, the Soldiers will deploy to Afghanistan for a six-month mobilization. The unique mission allows Illinois Army National Guard Soldiers to train and deploy side-by-side with their Polish counterparts. The Soldiers are from various parts of Illinois and were selected for the mission based on their training and skills.

"Our 20-year partnership with Poland is the strongest National Guard State Partnership Program in the nation," said Brig. Gen. Daniel Krumrei of Springfield, Adjutant General of the Illinois National Guard. "Illinois Soldiers and Airmen are instrumental in developing secure international relationships, while broadening their experiences and developing their military skills."

News media attending the event should arrive at least 30 minutes prior to the ceremony and are asked to contact Public Affairs at 217-761-3569 to gain access to Camp Lincoln.

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