Fort Drum soldiers packed a hangar at Wheeler-Sack Army Airfield for a Color Casing ceremony on Tuesday.

Nearly 1,800 members of the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade will deploy to Afghanistan in May.

The soldiers have been training at different bases across the country for almost a year.

The unit's leaders say they're ready.   

"We're very confident. We are well trained and well led and excited about going to execute this mission for our nation," said Colonel David Francis of the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade.

"The soldiers here have worked hard, the families have supported us and we've made a lot of progress in the last year," said Major Richard Tucker of the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade.

The soldiers will be deploying to eastern Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

This is a nine month deployment.