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Minnesota National Guard
Our View: Yellow Ribbon work isn't finished

Tuesday was a big day if you know a Red Bull The fourth and final wave of returning National Guard Soldiers belonging to Minnesota's 34th Infantry Division arrived home after a year-long deployment, most of it spent in southern Iraq

Over the last month more than 1,200 Red Bulls, as their unit is historically known, returned to family and friends at their home armories in Stillwater, Rosemount and Inver Grove Heights The returning Soldiers were missing three of their comrades - Carlos Wilcox, Daniel Drevnick and James Wertish were killed July 16, 2009 in an attack on their base in Basra, Iraq

But despite the heartache that unit members will carry with them after the death of three of their brothers in arms, there was still reason for the Red Bulls to smile as they came back to homecoming ceremonies worthy of their service and job well done

Although their year-long mission to assist Iraqi forces in improving their security for citizens in southern Iraq is now complete, ours isn't

News reports in the last week have revealed that more than 2,500 Red Bulls are owed $10 million in overtime pay by the federal government for their deployment three years ago Many of those Soldiers served again in the unit's most recent deployment On top of that startling news is word from Minnesota National Guard officials that up to a third of the returning Red Bulls will arrive home without a job waiting for them

Those two facts alone are enough evidence to deduce that these returning Soldiers and their families still need our support A welcome home ceremony is a wonderful way to express gratitude

But it means nothing if we as a community forget their sacrifice the next day, week or month

The Beyond the Yellow Ribbon projects of Woodbury and Washington County have made some tremendous strides in the last year to develop a network of support for families of deployed Soldiers

However, as these Soldiers and families try to regain that sense of "normal," we ask that those in the community who have not yet found a way to participate in the area Beyond the Yellow Ribbon campaign please do so

These men and women who hail from Woodbury, Stillwater, Cottage Grove, Lakeland, Lake Elmo and many other communities all over the state took a year out of their lives to serve our country overseas They put their civilian lives on hold to preserve our comfort, security and freedom

At the very least, we ought to provide some additional resources to help them transition back to civilian life
To find out more how you, your business or organization can help these returning Soldiers, go to the "Beyond the Yellow Ribbon" Web site at wwwbtyrorg

Published February 10 2010

Article source: http://www.woodburybulletin.com/event/article/id/33980/group/home/



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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.



In one month: Minnesota Guardsmen support Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria

Posted: 2017-09-29  02:25 PM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - In the span of a few weeks, three major hurricanes hit different parts of the southern United States, causing widespread damage and destruction and requiring the response of agencies around the country. The Minnesota National Guard is one of the many organizations that have responded, sending Soldiers and Airmen to Texas, Florida, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

"This is the most gratifying deployment of my career," said Capt. Jeremy Maxey with the 133rd Airlift Wing who was called back from his vacation early to go to the Virgin Islands. "It means a lot to be able to actually directly help people. It's why I serve. Throughout my career I've deployed numerous times, but this is the one where you actually see the people you serve."

The start of the month brought the first request for assistance. On Sept. 1, two CH-47 Chinook helicopters and 11 personnel from the St. Cloud-based B Company, 2nd General Support Aviation Battalion, 211th Aviation Regiment left for Texas following Hurricane Harvey to transport personnel and equipment in support of response efforts.



Finding fellowship in the sacred mission

Posted: 2017-09-26  12:02 PM
Minnesota National Guard CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - One of the most difficult, most sacred, honorable duties in the military is one that people don't often think about. It takes compassion, empathy, care, and requires great resilience. It is one that when called upon to train for, they hope to rarely perform because it means another Soldier has been lost. It is the duty of casualty notification officer and casualty assistance officer.

About 45 Minnesota Army National Guard Soldiers came to Camp Ripley, Minnesota, on September 21-22, 2017, for a Reset Seminar to find fellowship in one specific thing they have in common: delivering the worst news in the Army.

When a Soldier dies at home or overseas, CNOs and CAOs must notify and help families through the process, including paperwork, benefits, and funeral arrangements.



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