600 JBLM soldiers deploying to Afghanistan

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JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. (AP) — About 600 Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldiers are preparing for a year-long deployment in Afghanistan.

The Army says the 14th Engineer Battalion will clear roads of improvised explosive devices and other obstacles.

This is the first deployment for the battalion to Afghanistan. It has deployed three times to Iraq.

A flag ceremony for the departure will be held Thursday at Memorial Stadium at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.