(Cleveland)- Hundreds of Ohio National Guard soldiers are saying goodbye to loved ones as they prepare to head out.

A farewell ceremony took place at Cleveland State University's Wolstein Center Wednesday afternoon.

About 300 service members with the 37th Infantry Brigade Combat Team belonging to Headquarters, Headquarters Company and Company A, and the 237th Brigade Support Battalion are deploying.

Senator Sherrod Brown says, "our state's National Guard play an integral role in keeping our country safe both at home and abroad. Ohio’s servicemembers, who put their lives on the line for their nation, have earned our respect and deep gratitude. We will keep them in our hearts while they’re serving our country and will work to ensure that upon their return, these brave men and women also receive the benefits and care they have so richly earned.”

The soldiers are part of 3,500 from Ohio and Michigan and will deploy to Afghanistan over the next few months.