| Red Bulls caught with hands in cookie jar
COB BASRA, Iraq " Soldiers on Contingency Operating Base Basra were delighted and eager to tear open buckets of Sweet Martha's cookies and dunk them in fresh milk, all courtesy of a joint-effort with the Blue Star Mothers of America and the Exchange Clubs of Minnesota to send a holiday treat to those deployed during the holidays
A taste of home
Eyes lit up as Soldiers of the 34th "Red Bull" Infantry Division popped the lids off of the familiar buckets and told their counterparts who had never had a Sweet Martha about the famous cookies, and how a trip to the Minnesota State Fair just isn't the same without them
Since many Soldiers were deployed to Iraq during the fair this year, they were grateful to sink their teeth into something unique to Minnesota and to share that experience with others
Chief Warrant Officer Krystal Jancze, a Portland, Ore native, initially turned down a box of cookies When she realized they were from Sweet Martha's Cookie Jar, a wide grin spread across her face and she quickly changed her mind
"She was really ecstatic about the cookies," said Sgt 1st Class Angela Amundson "She even warmed them up and had lots of milk"
After living so long without fresh milk, the concept really surprised most Soldiers, who stared in disbelief "Is it still good?" they wondered But after sipping on freshly poured cups of ice-cold milk, the general consensus was "Mmm "¦ I haven't tasted real milk for so long!"
Thanks to Kwik Trip and Carbonic Continental of Burnsville, who had donated and packaged 300 gallons in dry ice, Soldiers were able to drink real milk in Iraq It was an unexpected treat they were eager and grateful to receive Especially during the holidays, when it is harder than usual to be so far away from home, it feels like a luxury to dunk a Sweet Martha cookie into a glass of real milk
29 Dec, 2009
By Spc Stephanie Cassinos
Multi-National Division " South Public Affairs
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Article source: http://www.theredbulls.org/article00546
Litchfield and Local Veteran Honor Gen. John Vessey at Armory Open House
Posted: 2017-03-10 08:50 AM
LITCHFIELD, Minn. -Bruce Cottington, a Navy veteran of WWII and Korea, donated a bronze bust of Gen. John W. Vessey, Jr. to the Litchfield National Guard unit during the armory's public open house event March 4. Cottington, a Litchfield resident, commands the Minnesota Chapter of the Veterans of Underage Military Service. VUMS members enlisted in the military prior to the minimum age requirement in order to serve their country during WWII. Cottington received the bust from Vessey, a fellow VUMS member. Both enlisted in the military at the age of 16.
The highlight of the 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion open house was the unveiling of the sculpture. The unit was very supportive when Cottington proposed donating the sculpture. The Litchfield community has always been very supportive of the National Guard over the years, so the open house was a chance to say 'thanks' to their neighbors. "This was a great opportunity to honor Bruce and to honor Gen. Vessey," said B Co., 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion Commander, Capt. Seth Goreham. Bravo Company also has a tight relationship with the local American Legion and VFW. Many Litchfield citizens are former members of Bravo Company, or the unit's predecessors A Co, 682nd Engineer Battalion, and the 849th Mobility Augmentation Company.
Camp Ripley welcomes new command sergeant major
Posted: 2017-03-08 03:29 PM
CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The garrison command team of Camp Ripley, family, friends and colleagues from the Minnesota National Guard attended a Change of Responsibility ceremony between Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Worden and Command Sgt. Maj. Matt Erickson, March 5, 2017, at Camp Ripley.
The ceremony was an official "passing of the sword" from one senior noncommissioned officer to the next and assumption of the duties and responsibilities that go along with the position of Garrison Command Sergeant Major.
As with many military ceremonies those in attendance welcomed Erickson as a new member of the team and bid farewell, recognized and thanked Worden for his service.
Norwegian youth recognized for response to vehicle accident
Posted: 2017-02-22 09:59 AM
CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Norwegian youths Stian Dahl and Haavard Engen received the Camp Ripley Garrison Commander's coin from Col. Scott St Sauver February 19, 2017, in recognition for reacting to a vehicle accident they witnessed earlier that week.
As part of the U.S.-Norway Reciprocal Troop Exchange, Norwegian youths ages 19-20 are matched up with a host family in order to spend an evening experiencing American culture. In most situations the "Buddy Weekend" as it's called allows the youths to go shopping, attend events and have home-cook meals along with their host family.
"We are able to match up youth members with families all over the state," said Staff Sgt. Tim Krouth, Buddy Weekend organizer. "Lots of the families have hosted one or two of our Norwegian friends for several years in a row now, it a great way to relax and see some of Minnesota."
To the top of the mountain and back, NOREX 44 members embrace the Norwegian winter
Posted: 2017-02-21 01:25 PM
HALTDALEN, Norway - After two days at a base camp near Haltdalen, Norway, Minnesota National Guardsmen participating in the 44th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange were ready for the most challenging aspect of their four-day field training exercise - a ski march up the mountain.
It was Day three of the FTX, meaning members of the 44th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange had slowly adjusted to surviving and thriving while living in a winter environment and also honed their skills on cross country skills well enough to begin a climb that would take nearly three hours.
"Our goal was to get you to know how to use the winter, see how the Norwegians use the winter, and how we survive the winter so we can conduct combat," said Vidar Aune, one of several members of Home Guard 12 guiding the Minnesota National Guard Soldiers and Airmen during their training here. "By getting the experience living outside in the snow, you manage to survive it and handle it quite well."