SMYRNA, Tenn. (WATE) — Nearly 200 soldiers were welcomed home by friends and family after a 10-month long deployment for Task Force Iron Valor to the Middle East came to an end this week.

The soldiers of the Tennessee National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 181st Field Artillery Regiment arrived home Thursday, Feb. 3. An additional 140 soldiers are expected home Saturday, Feb. 5. The unit is headquartered in Chattanooga, with units in Pulaski, Lawrenceburg, Fayetteville and Dayton.

“After a long year, members of the 1-181st are happy to be home,” Lt. Col. Darrin Haas said.

For the past two weeks, the soldiers have been completing demobilization and out-processing procedures at Fort Bliss in Texas.

  • Soldiers from the Tennessee National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 181st Field Artillery Regiment, are welcomed home by Maj. Gen. Jeff Holmes, Tennessee’s Adjutant General, following the unit’s arrival at Smyrna’s Volunteer Training Site, Feb. 3. The unit successfully completed a 10-month deployment to the Middle East. (photo by Sgt. 1st Class Timothy Cordeiro)

“I couldn’t be more proud of the many accomplishments of Task Force Iron Valor,” said Lt. Col.
Phillip E. Hill Jr., commander of the 1-181st. “Our soldiers overcame all obstacles and always accomplished the mission with outstanding results. It was my honor to lead the 1-181st on this deployment and we are thankful to be back home.”

The 1-181st was part of Iron Force Valor and deployed to six different countries in the Middle East under U.S. command. The troops supported Operations Spartan Shield and Inherent Resolve.