Atlanta, Texas mayor called to active duty

ATLANTA, Texas - The mayor of Atlanta, Texas has been called to active duty.

Mayor and Command Sgt. Maj. Travis Ransom will serve in support of Operation Freedom's Sentinel (OFS).

Ransom is a 23-year veteran of the Army Reserve.

He's also been mayor of Atlanta since 2017.

Ransom will be deployed to Afghanistan as the Battalion Command Sergeant Major with the 321st Expeditionary Military Intelligence Battalion later this fall.

OFS is part of a NATO mission that conducts counterterrorism operations targeting terrorist groups like al Qaeda and the local ISIS affiliate.

OFS also conducts a train, advise and assist mission to build up local Afghan security forces.

Ransom will be part of a regular rotation of armed forces in Afghanistan.

He says deploying in the middle of a pandemic, during a presidential election, and while peace talks with the Taliban are ongoing, adds additional complexity to the mission.

U.S. troops have been in Afghanistan for 18 years.

Ransom believes he could be with the last group of soldiers to deploy there.

"If our nation decides otherwise then we'll stand in the breach and we'll continue to serve there as long as we're asked to, but we have a good opportunity really finish with honor and come home," explained Ransom.

Ransom expects to spend about nine months oversees.

Mayor Pro-tem Dean McDuff will step to run the city council meetings in Ransom's absence.

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