ST. PAUL, Minn. – Gov. Mark Dayton has approved 11 soldiers from the Minnesota National Guard’s 34th Combat Aviation Brigade to support relief efforts for Hurricane Harvey victims in Texas.

The soldiers departed Friday from St. Cloud via two CH-47 chinook helicopters to conduct aviation operations in Texas.

The aviation brigade is an Army National Guard unit that supports disaster response operations by providing both UH-60 Black Hawk and CH-47 Chinook helicopters.

“We train for this type of mission and we’re glad that we can assist the people of Texas with this type of professional support,” said Col. Shawn Manke, brigade commander.

The soldiers will join Guardsmen from across the nation who are being activated in response to Hurricane Harvey and will stay as long as needed.