Members of the 1st Battalion, 297th Infantry Regiment gathered in formation outside the headquarters of the Alaska National Guard Sunday morning.

"223 individuals who made the choice to be here, knowing there was a price for making that choice," said the regiment's commanding officer, Lt. Col. Sam Scott.

The price for his soldiers is a year in Kosovo, where they will be part of a NATO's peacekeeping force.

"We're there to provide a safe and secure environment for the local nationals, the folks who live in Kosovo, and also to insure they have freedom of movement in their country. So, those are really our two goals," Scott said.

The deployment is the first for many members of the regiment, including 1st Lt. Alyssa Brenner.

"I'm super excited. It's going to be a great mission," she said. "We're going to do some good training over there, so I'm excited to work with the guys. They seem amped and energetic and ready to go, so, we're excited about it."

Before they go, the soldiers have some important business to take care of — some final moments with family. They are expected to return home next April.

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