DENVER (AP) – About 50 Colorado Army National Guard soldiers in a heavy helicopter unit are deploying to Afghanistan for a year.

A departure ceremony is planned Wednesday in Denver for the soldiers, who are members of the 2nd General Support Aviation Battalion, 135th Aviation Regiment.

The unit is based at Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora and operates CH-47 Chinook helicopters.

The unit deployed to Iraq in 2007-2008, Afghanistan in 2010-2011 and Kuwait in 2015.

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