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Minnesota National Guard
Disabled Soldier inspires wounded Minn. Soldiers

He lives in Texas but retired SFC Dana Bowman was in Minnesota on Sunday to motivate troops who were injured while serving His message carries to everyone: 'disabilities are only the things you think you can't do' A terrible accident left Bowman severely injured but not about to give up On Sunday, through the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon program, he is encouraging wounded Minnesota Soldiers to push forward

"With my family, friends and modern technology, I stand tall and proud," Bowman told the group of Soldiers

As a member of the US Army Golden Knights elite skydiving team, Bowman did all the tricks, including the demanding diamond track He and his partner would crisscross paths, leaving a trail of smoke that formed a diamond

They'd done it 50 times before, but during a practice in 1994, it didn't go as planned Their combined speed was 300 miles per hour when they hit His friend's arm severed Bowman's legs Bowman's friend died

"Self pity, bitterness, depression, I wasn't about that," said Bowman "I wanted to come back"

Since that jump, he has skydived 1,000 more times He bikes, water skis and became a helicopter pilot

"A little fight, a little teamwork, little coaching, you can accomplish anything," Bowman said

SFC Craig France needed surgery on his right knee and both shoulders after picking up heavy equipment in Kosovo He can no longer run the way he used to and worries he can't serve his country physically as well as he has for decades

"The first time I met him I just had to hug him because he's got that inspiration," France said about Bowman

"For him to be hurt and not being able to do the things he enjoys doing or does it anyway because he knows he's going to hurt, it's frustrating to him," said Tammy France, Craig's wife

Tammy says the entire family has adapted, not only to Craig's injuries but also to the psychological ups and downs cause by war

"It's work, it's work every day," she said

That's why they come to 'Beyond the Yellow Ribbon' events

Congress just approved $2 million to help fund Minnesota's Beyond the Yellow Ribbon program It provides counseling and support to help Soldiers and their families readjust to life after war In just the last two months, the Army reported 42 suicides, which is almost half of what was reported all of last year

Elena Kibasova, 5 Eyewitness News
March 16, 2009

Read more and see video at: KSTPcom
March 11, 2009: "Group working to make Washington County first ‘Yellow Ribbon’ county," Lake Elmo Leader

Go to the Minnesota National Guard's Beyond the Yellow Ribbon page for more information about the Minnesota National Guard's award-winning Servicemember reintegration program.



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Minnesota-based aviation unit honors storied division, enters into new, 'expeditionary' era

Posted: 2017-12-12  11:29 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade (ECAB), who recently celebrated a year full of achievements, have embraced a new name: Red Devils.

The St. Paul-based unit hosted its annual aviation brigade ball Dec. 9, at the Envision Event Center in Oakdale, Minnesota, where the unit's new logo was unveiled.

Soldiers of the 34th ECAB, which falls under and supports the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, will continue to wear the Red Bull insignia on their uniforms. However, they will now be known and referred to as the Red Devils, a name that pays homage to the division's historical accomplishments and fierce warfighting.



Minnesota Nice Extends to Puerto Rico

Posted: 2017-12-08  12:08 PM
Minnesota National Guard CAMP SANTIAGO, Puerto Rico - It has been more than two months since Hurricane Maria stuck Puerto Rico, leaving a trail of disaster behind it. The island was in dire need of some extra help. More than 230 Air National Guardsmen from 29 states have been deployed to the island and are helping in any way they can.

Eleven of those Airmen are from the Minnesota National Guard's 148th Fighter Wing out of Duluth, Minn. and the 133rd Airlift Wing out of St. Paul, Minn., are no exception in their desire to lend a helping hand. They have been at Camp Santiago, Puerto Rico, since before Thanksgiving and will leave around mid-December. Their mission is to feed military and civilian hurricane relief workers, giving them the much-needed fuel to complete their mission throughout the day.



Governor Mark Dayton installs new Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General

Posted: 2017-11-04  04:16 PM
TAG installation ST. PAUL, Minn. - Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton administered the oath of office to Maj. Gen. Jon A. Jensen, installing him as the Minnesota National Guard's 31st Adjutant General during a ceremony in St. Paul, November 4, 2017.

"General Jensen has been a tremendous leader of the Minnesota National Guard throughout his years of dedicated service," said Governor Dayton. "He has served in two top leadership positions, as the Commanding General of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, and also as the Chief of Staff at the Guard's Joint Force Headquarters. I am confident that he will continue to provide the same outstanding leadership as his predecessor, General Rick Nash."

Jensen most recently served as the Commanding General of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division. He previously held positions as Deputy Commanding General, United States Army Africa and Southern European Task Force, Minnesota National Guard Director of the Joint Staff and Minnesota National Guard Assistant Adjutant General - Army.



Guard Heritage Suffers with Loss of Artillery Unit

Posted: 2017-10-04  11:22 AM
ETAB ANOKA, Minn. - The Minnesota National Guard lost one of its most historically significant units when the 151st Artillery's E Battery, (Target Acquisition) cased its colors in a ceremony at the Anoka High School Aug. 19, 2017.

The Target Acquisition Battery (ETAB), 151st Field Artillery is one of the oldest and most decorated units in the Minnesota National Guard and the 34th Infantry Division. "Both Minnesota and the Division lose the proud lineage that goes back to Civil War days, through WW1 and WW2, and had a significant amount of battle streamers," said 151st Field Artillery Battalion Commander, Lt. Col. Patrick Cornwell.

The 151st Field Artillery draws its lineage from the 1st Regiment, Minnesota Heavy Artillery of 1864 which fought two major campaigns in Tennessee during the Civil War.



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