Ninety men and women of the South Dakota National Guard have been activated for overseas duty.

Company C, 1st Battalion, 189th Aviation Regiment was on hand with their friends and family for an activation ceremony at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center on Tuesday.

The Rapid City-based 1-189th, comprised of pilots, crew chiefs, medics, aviation operations specialists and other support personnel, is deploying to the Middle East where they will provide aerial medical evacuation support with its HH-60M Black Hawk helicopters.

South Dakota National Guard

"We're here today to thank you for answering the difficult call to leave the comfort of your homes, to leave the embraces of your families and to serve your country," South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard told the Soldiers.

He then thanked the family members, employers, coworkers, friends and neighbors that would make sacrifices of their own during the yearlong deployment.

South Dakota National Guard

The unit will be in Fort Hood, Texas for training prior to their overseas deployment.

The specific destination of the unit was not disclosed in the press release from the National Guard's public affairs office.

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