Columbia, SC (WLTX)-- First Gentleman Michael Haley is headed to Afghanistan with the 349th Agribusiness Development Team.
The unit will work with Afghans to improve their farming practices.
It was a proud, yet emotional day Thursday morning for the families, as close to 50 soldiers departed.
The Agribusiness Development team of the SC National Guard is headed to Indiana for some training before traveling overseas for nearly a year to teach Afghan farmers agriculture.
It was a morning full of hugs, kisses, and some tears as families shared those precious moments before saying goodbye.
"Each family, each airman, each soldier is special, and the Haleys are part of that family," said Maj. General Robert Livingston.
Governor Haley consoled her two children as they wished their hero farewell.
This will be Michael Haley's first deployment to Afghanistan.
"It's going to be a long year for the families," Sen. Lindsey Graham added. "There are going to be a lot of birthdays missed and every time the phone rings, their heart is going to beat faster."