Over 400 Wisconsin National Guard troops return home this week.

Lt. Colonel Tim Donovan says members of the 1st Battalion, 121st Field Artillery are on their way back to Wisconsin. Welcome home ceremonies will be held today in Oak Creek as the first 175 return, then again on Sunday with the final 235 coming back.

The Milwaukee-based unit spent the past year guarding convoys in Iraq. Donovan says they carried out 4,000 individual missions and traveled over 5 million miles to secure convoys against insurgent attacks.

Despite a happy homecoming for many, the unit is returning home without one of its members. Cpl. Steven Castner was killed in July of 2006 by a roadside bomb, just shortly after the battalion had arrived in Iraq.

A soldier from the Maine National Guard was also killed while working with the battalion. Donovan says several other soldiers were also injured.

The unit's return leaves just over 500 Wisconsin National Guard members still out on active duty. About half of them are serving overseas. 

AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (MP3 1:05)

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