MANHATTAN - More than 100 New York Army National Guard soldiers bid their loved ones farewell at a ceremonial send-off at Hunter College Wednesday.

The soldiers are going on a yearlong rebuilding mission in Afghanistan. Hundreds of supporters showed up to send the soldiers off on their mission.

Supporters say it is important for the soldiers to know that they have people at home who love, respect and honor them. The soldiers agree, saying that warm wishes and letters from home help when they?re away.

The soldiers will head to North Carolina for two months for training. They will then spend 10 months in Afghanistan, training Afghan military and police.

More than 1,400 New York Army National Guard soldiers were sent off with celebrations throughout the state.