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Local guard unit to deploy in January

The 1165th Military Police Co., which maintains a unit in Brewton, will be deployed to Afghanistan for a mission that begins in January, Sgt. Frank Barnes said Thursday.

The company, which is based in Fairhope, had a 15-month tour in Iraq that ended in July 2004. On that mission, the unit was mainly involved in opening police stations and training local officers. This time, the mission will be different, Barnes said.

“This time it would be personal security,” he said.

The local unit includes members from Brewton, Flomaton and the Florida panhandle. About a dozen of the members are from Brewton, Barnes said. The entire company will deploy about 170 people.

In Iraq, the company’s tour was extended by three months. Upon their return, the company received the Presidential Unit Citation, Valorous Unit Citation and Meritorious Unit Citation. The company lost one man on its Iraqi mission. Three members of the Brewton unit received Purple Hearts for injuries received.

“This platoon is the best platoon in the state,” Barnes said. “We have a lot of young kids, but in saying that, they’re good. I’m blessed they make my job easy.”