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Minnesota National Guard
Bravo comes home

"Short, sweet and as intimate as it can get" was the welcome home ceremony for Bravo Battery of the 1-125th Field Artillery unit of the Minnesota National Guard

The short welcome home ceremony was held at the Fairmont Armory on Monday, July 23, and the Soldiers were released to their families

The outpouring of support was evident as hundreds of family members and friends were on the lawn of the armory, waiting the Soldiers' return

Fire trucks from throughout the area brought the Soldiers through Fairmont and to the armory Guardsmen rode atop fire trucks and EMS vehicles, many from their hometowns Towns from A to Z, or at least Alpha to Welcome, and many more towns in southwestern Minnesota were represented by the nearly 30 vehicles that carried the hundred National Guardsmen through Fairmont and to the armory

Arriving at the armory, the Soldiers were greeted by signs, flags and yellow ribbons as well as the cheers of family and friends

Soldiers were given time to be with their families at the armory Hugs, kisses and tears were shared before gathering for a short ceremony

Fairmont Mayor Randy Query welcomed the troops with the words, "Thanks to all of you and your families, and welcome home Red Bulls!"

"We are a blessed nation and a blessed people," said Captain Don Kramer "Everyone has sacrificed a lot" Kramer spoke of missing two of everything -- birthdays, anniversaries, planting and harvest seasons and duck hunting seasons Weddings and births were also missed by the Red Bulls, as they have spent the past 22 months away from their families

Despite missing two of everything, Kramer pointed out what the Soldiers have gained "We have bonds and friendships not formed in any other way We're all brothers and sisters now"

Kramer spoke of the lush fields the Soldiers seen as they took the long bus ride from Fort McCoy, Wisconsin "And there was nothing blowing up by the side of the road," he added, much to the delight of all present

The Fairmont VFW adopted the Bravo Battery when they left, nearly two years ago On their return, the Soldiers were presented with a commemorative coin from the VFW post Soldiers were brought to attention to receive the coin, and to witness the presentation of several medals

A Purple Heart was presented to Sergeant Crawford Phillip Ewerdt received an Army Commendation with Valor Spc Andrew Hanson of Luverne received several His vehicle was hit by a bomb in Iraq, and both of his legs were amputated Hanson explained that he has been undergoing physical and occupational therapy daily while an outpatient at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington, DC He thanked his comrades for their thoughts and prayers A moment of silence was given for the three Soldiers who did not return from Iraq After a short prayer from a Fairmont pastor, the troops were dismissed and went home with their families

Upon arrival in Jackson, a short parade was held, beginning at the Burger King

Carol Schreiber, Murray County News
July 25, 2007
Article source: www.murraycountynews.net

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Forging a path to career success

Posted: 2018-03-16  08:45 AM
Col. Angela Steward-Randle ST. PAUL, Minn. - Col. Angela Steward-Randle grew up in a military family - her father served in the Army on active duty - but it was a chance encounter with a friend at college that led her to want to make the military a career.

"My story is no different than many others," Steward-Randle, the Director of Human Resources, Manpower and Personnel for the Minnesota National Guard said. "I was in college and looking for financial resources to help pay for it."

Her college friend suggested they attend a summer training with the Reserve Officer Training Corps that had no obligation and could earn them some money. The friend never ended up going, but Steward-Randle did. After earning recognition as the top honor graduate and receiving an offer of a scholarship, she was hooked.

Minnesota Guardsman Receives Award for Combating Drugs in his Community

Posted: 2018-03-09  03:13 PM
Counterdrug WOODBURY, Minn. - Staff Sgt. Benjamin Kroll, an analyst with the Minnesota National Guard's Counterdrug Task Force who is assigned to work with the Hennepin County Sherriff's Office was recognized for his achievements as the Analyst of the Year during the 2018 Minnesota Association of Crime and Intelligence Analysts Training Symposium in Woodbury, Minnesota, March 7, 2018.

Through a partnership with Minnesota law enforcement agencies throughout the state, the Minnesota National Guard Counterdrug Task Force (MNCDTF) supports the anti-drug initiatives to counter all primary drug threats and vulnerabilities through the effective application of available assets, said Maj. Jon Dotterer, Counterdrug Coordinator for the State of Minnesota. The goal for the program is to support federal, state, tribal, and local agencies in the detection, disruption, interdiction, and curtailment of illicit drugs.

Kroll is one of sixteen service members on the Counterdrug Task Force that provides this force-multiplying service to our communities against illicit drug-use. With the information that law enforcement provide through their patrols and daily operations, Kroll and his colleagues across the state assist by putting together a figurative picture with all of the gathered information which aids in identifying how to move forward with legal action to deter or prevent the sale or use of illegal narcotic drugs.

Women Opened Doors in Minnesota National Guard

Posted: 2018-03-08  09:05 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - "The battlefront is no place for women to be," said Command Sgt. Maj. Earl Kurtzweg, 125th Field Artillery, in an article published in 1976. "There are certain jobs girls say they can do, but they just can't do ... the battlefront is no place for women to be. Other countries in the world use women in combat, but the U.S. has not come around to that way of thinking." Kathy Berg, a New Ulm reporter summarized at the time. "So women in the New Ulm unit take care of personnel files and pay records and leave the fighting to the men."

The Minnesota National Guard has "come around to that way of thinking" since those early days of gender integration. In the last 44 years women have made momentous strides toward inclusion and acceptance. Their accomplishments are testimony to their fortitude and the progressive development of the Minnesota National Guard.

When an accomplished female Soldier is credited with breaking barriers she will often pass that honor to the women that preceded her. Brig. Gen. Johanna Clyborne is such a leader. She acknowledges that she is one of the first females in the Minnesota National Guard who has held key leadership roles, however she sees it differently. "I feel responsible for all women in uniform," said Clyborne. "Women before me opened the door, now I've cleared the room. It's up to the women behind me to hold the room."

Securing the Bold North: Minnesota National Guard supports Super Bowl LII

Posted: 2018-02-02  10:45 PM
Super Bowl 52 MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - More than 400 Minnesota National Guardsmen are supporting security efforts in Minneapolis ahead of Super Bowl 52.

"This is what we do," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "When the local community can't meet the public safety needs, they come to the Guard. We're their normal partner, we're a natural partner, and we're their preferred partner when it comes to filling in the gaps that they can't fill."

At the request of the city, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton authorized the Minnesota National Guard to provide support to security efforts leading up to and during Super Bowl 52. The Guardsmen are providing direct support to and working alongside law enforcement officers from across the state. Like their civilian law enforcement partners, Minnesota Guardsmen are focused on ensuring a safe experience for the residents and visitors who are attending the Super Bowl festivities.

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