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History
Minnesota National Guard
DIVARTY Remembered

To trace the history of the 34th Infantry Division Artillery (DIVARTY), you have to go back Actually way back, when the Minnesota Reserve National Guard was organized on April 15, 1887, and became the 3rd Infantry Regiment (IR) headquartered in St Paul, Minn At this time, their State Active Duty consisted of responding to civil disturbances, small riots and other law enforcement duties

These Soldiers weren't limited to duty in Minnesota though The 3rd IR was actually reorganized in 1898 as the 14th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry and was the first state to mobilize for the Spanish American War and the Phillipine Insurrection

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There would be many more re-organizations and relocations over the years, but 1917, is the year that the 125th Field Artillery Regiment was officially born During World War II, they continued making history when the unit left for North Africa in December 1942 The 125th FA ended up firing over 250,000 rounds of artillery ammunition in 480 days of combat, which was more than any other battalion

So as you can see, DIVARTY's roots run deep and they had a huge role in the history of the Minnesota National Guard Although the unit is no longer around, many of its' members are I had the privilege of speaking with nine DIVARTY commanders in June at Camp Ripley, Minn Some of them have been retired for quite some time and some are still in the Minnesota National Guard One of them, Maj. Gen. Jon Trost has even moved  onto the National Guard Bureau and is working as the Deputy Commanding General of the Training and Doctrine Command One thing that they all had in common though, was their love for the National Guard and the field artillery

Col Roger D Delgehausen who commanded DIVARTY from October 1985 to October 1987 put it best:

"Being in the Minnesota National Guard was one of the best experiences in my life"

Comradery, esprit de corps, brotherhoodthese are all words that were used to describe DIVARTY Col Wayne Hayes, who has spent 26 years in the field artillery community, talked about how he liked the tightness of the units

"I was in the New Ulm battalion, there was a battalion in Montevideo and a battalion in Duluth at the time If I needed help, I knew I could pick up the phone and talk to any other one of those units," Hayes stated

Along with their love for this branch, they all talked about training and how far the Minnesota Army National Guard has come Col Kenneth Digre was in an 8-inch battery  at one point in his career and talked about how the unit trained with nuclear weapons systems

"We had 8-inch artillery nukes and we'd be shooting the high explosive spottersThey're used to get firing corrections before you shoot the good one," Digre recalled This required a lot of specialized training because this type of round wasn't assembled up arrival You had to build it from a basic, hollow shell
Annual training periods (AT) have also changed As the Minnesota National Guard has shifted into a new normal, deployments have become routine for Soldiers and Airmen Col Louis Bodey describes how AT was in the early 70's

"At that time, the National Guard was still kind of struggling with their image The first week, they'd go out to the field one day, overnight They would dismiss at noon on Friday, everybody would go home and come back Sunday night They'd go out to the field two nights during the second week Come back in and clean, then have softball games and volleyball games and that was your annual   training"

The Minnesota National Guard has adapted and overcome The 34th Infantry Division, just last year, had command and control over the entire southern third of Iraq That, right there, is evidence of how far we've come Col John Kreye talked about how this transition has amazed him throughout his career

"Back in the day, when we didn't really have the concern of deployment, AT was a big thing to us Shooting was a big thing It took a whole year to plan an AT period Now we are so much better We can plan a year-long deployment in 8 months and prepare a unit to go and do as well as the active Army It's amazing what Soldiers can do"

Annual training is no longer the "˜summer camp' it used to be We also don't see many high profile celebrities or athletes like some of these gentlemen did There used to be many Minnesota Vikings in the guard, to include Carl Eller Digre talked about seeing Eller sitting behind the DIVARTY officer mess, where they ate, peeling potatoes It's hard for me to imagine Jared Allen hanging out and peeling potatoes in this day and age

Although a lot has changed and DIVARTY has come and gone, it's apparent that the members of this outstanding unit will be in touch for years to come In fact, they held a reunion last Friday in Ham Lake, Minn

My time with the DIVARTY commanders led me to one conclusion While at times, being a Soldier has it's challenges, being in the Minnesota National Guard makes it a bit easier and reminds us daily of why we raised our right hand This group of citizen Soldiers and Airmen is more than a premier international force, we are a family A family that is dedicated and ready to take on whatever challenge is handed to us Always Ready!

By Sgt Dajon Schafer, Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs
August 27, 2010

DIVARTY History

125th Field Artillery Timeline

125th Field Artillery History





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Latest News

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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