Five members of Purdue family deploying to Afghanistan this week - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Five members of Purdue family deploying to Afghanistan this week

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -- Saturday night an additional 340 Iowa National Guard members are on their way to serve in Afghanistan. The soldiers are part of one of the largest deployments in state history.

Five members of the Purdue family are heading overseas. The matriarch of the group -- Linda -- ranks as a Major in the National Guard. She's staying back for this deployment, but is proud to see four of her children and a nephew following in her footsteps.

Major Purdue knows the mission will challenge their strengths, but unlike many other soldiers, the younger Purdue's will have each other to depend on.

"That's very comforting, knowing that they have someone all the time. Not just their buddy that's there because they have to be, but family," she said.

One look at a picture of the family says it all. The five relatives are carrying it with them, attached to their wallets. The photo is of the entire family dressed in their National Guard uniforms. It was taken on the 4th of July, a holiday which is especially important to the Purdue's.

Major Purdue's granddaughter is the next in line to join the service. She's still a bit too young, but she's already a big fan of the cap.

Online Reporter Colleen O'Shaughnessy

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