FORT SILL, Okla.-- As their families and friends stood together in a show of support, Soldiers from 4th Battalion, 3rd Air Defense Artillery deployed from Fort Sill to their temporary duty assignment in the Middle East.

Although this was the first deployment for many of the Soldiers, they were ready.

"I'm very well prepared," said Pfc. Waldemar Perez, C Battery, 4-3rd ADA. "For the last two years, we have done nothing but train. So we are very well prepared."

Many Soldiers had their cell phones out, trying to make that last minute call to their family and friends back home. For one Soldier, his first deployment was a mixture of excitement and nervousness.

"It's game day," said Spc. Daniel Foley, Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 4-3rd ADA. "I feel like I did back in high school when you train and train for the first football game. You have butterflies in your stomach, and you're ready to go. You're excited and nervous at the same time."

Many of the Soldiers feel that leaving for this deployment is challenging.

"It's hard. We have a job to do, but we still have to leave the family behind," said 1st Lt. Mike McEunn from HHB.

Some of the troops said it was especially hard to explain what a deployment is and why they're leaving to their children.

"It's hard to leave little kids," said McEunn. "They don't really understand what's going on."

Capt. Andy Buissereth, Headquarters Support Battalion commander, had a special message for the deployed Soldiers and their families.

"It's taken the full working staff of the family readiness support assistant (FRSA), family readiness groups and our families preparing the brigades' families to facilitate a smooth transition so the Soldiers are confident their families are taken care of while they are downrange. Our FRSA is working with post agencies to get the families the support they need."