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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota National Guard Soldiers Killed In Iraq

The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of two Minnesota National Guard Soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom

Sergeant Corey J Rystad, Age 20, of Red Lake Falls; and Sergeant Bryan T McDonough, Age 22, of Maplewood were both killed in combat Both Soldiers were assigned to B Company, 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry, based in Crookston While traveling on a patrol mission near Fallujah, Iraq an Improvised Explosive Device detonated near their vehicle on Saturday, December 2nd at approximately 4 pm Iraq time

"We mourn the loss of these two Soldiers; they were truly part of our National Guard family," said Maj Gen Larry Shellito, the Adjutant General of Minnesota, "Please take a moment to reflect on the ultimate sacrifice made by these two brave men We will never forget their dedication, loyalty and bravery to the United States of America and the state of Minnesota I ask that you keep their families and loved ones in your thoughts and prayers as they enter the holiday season with heavy hearts"

Members of the media are invited to a press conference at 3 pm on Monday, Dec 4 at the Crookston National Guard Armory, 1801 University Avenue North, Crookston, Minn Lt Col Kevin Gutknecht, the Rear Detachment Commander of the 1st of the 34th Brigade Combat Team will make a statement to the media

The Minnesota National Guard will operate a media information center at the Crookston National Guard Armory, 1801 University Avenue North, Crookston, Minn on Monday, Dec 4 The media is invited to generate remote broadcasts from the Detroit Lakes Armory on Monday, Dec 4

NOTICE TO NEWS EDITORS:

-The families have requested that further media inquiries be directed to the Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs Office at 651-268-8949 The family does not wish to be contacted by the media

- Details of funeral service will be provided as they become available

- visit: www.MinnesotaNationalGuard.org
Sgt. Bryan McDonough
Sgt. Corey Rystad



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Minnesota Identification Card will no longer grant access to Department of Defense installations

Posted: 2016-08-19  01:53 PM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 19, 2016

ST. PAUL, Minn.- With the implementation of the "REAL ID Act" going into effect at Department of Defense installations nationwide, access will no longer be granted to Minnesotans carrying standard state-issued identification cards. Beginning this week, Minnesota residents will be required to have an approved escort or use alternative forms of identification to access the following installations:

- 133rd Airlift Wing, St. Paul
- 148th Fighter Wing, Duluth
- 934th Joint Base, Minneapolis
- Military Facility at Fort Snelling

Without a 'Real ID,' access will be granted only to individuals with an approved escort (i.e. a service member with a Common Access Card), or carrying one of the approved alternative forms of acceptable ID.



General John W. Vessey, Jr. - The 10th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Posted: 2016-08-19  08:22 AM
Gen. John W. Vessey Jr. General John W. Vessey, Jr., a former member of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Red Bull Infantry Division and the 10th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, passed away August 18, 2016, at the age of 94.

General John W. Vessey, Jr. was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on 29 June 1922. He enlisted in the Minnesota National Guard in May 1939 while still in high school, becoming a member of Headquarters, 59th Field Artillery Brigade, 34th Infantry Division. He was only 16 and fibbed about his age to join. With other members of his unit he was called to active duty in February 1941. When war came, the 34th became the first American division sent to Europe, where it initially fought in North Africa and then in Italy. A natural leader, Vessey rose quickly in the enlisted ranks until 6 May 1944 when, pinned down on the Anzio Beachhead amidst high casualties, the 21-year old battery first sergeant was given a battlefield commission and sent forward to direct artillery fire.

Vessey decided to stay in the Army after war. During his first 30 years of military service, he spent most of his time in combat divisions. In addition to his World War II assignment with the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division in North Africa and Italy, Vessey served with the 4th Infantry Division and 3rd Armored Division in Germany, the 25th Infantry Division in Vietnam and was commanding general of the 4th Infantry Division (Mechanized) at Fort Carson, Colorado.

He attended the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, the Armed Forces Staff College, and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. He also graduated from the University of Maryland. His love of flying prompted him to earn his wings, which he always wore proudly. When he graduated from the Army Helicopter School in 1970, he was 15 years older than the next oldest student.



Message of hope and healing stands out during fun run

Posted: 2016-08-18  10:49 AM
Power of One Fun Run CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - A 5K run/walk event was held for Minnesota National Guard service members Saturday at Camp Ripley.

This event is one of two in the series of fun runs hosted by the Resilience, Risk Reduction & Suicide Prevention, or R3SP.

"Soldiers truly enjoyed this alternative training option. The smiles that were on the participants faces when they crossed the finish line showed they had fun," said Sgt. 1st Class Jeanette Chaffee of R3SP.



Guard unit proudly carries Heritage Torch

Posted: 2016-08-17  09:07 AM
1-194 CAV CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Soldiers of the 1st Combined Arms Battalion, 194th Armor Regiment celebrated, remembered and cherished the legacy of their unit with several events this past drill weekend.

The inheritance of over 70 years of deployments, challenges and achievements resonated in the several events executed by the men and women of the battalion.

"The trials this unit lived through since its creation are inspirational for all of us ... no matter what you are doing," said Capt. Joe Howe, commander of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Combined Arms Battalion, 194th Armor Regiment.



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