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Minnesota National Guard
Go Home can be toughest order

Almost 9,000 Minnesota female vets have served in the Middle East, dodging snipers alongside the men Finding a place for them is tough - in both military and civilian life

The sound of children's laughter burbles from across a park, and Mary Horgan suddenly is back behind the wheel of the hulking Humvee, navigating the narrow streets of an Iraqi village, terrified that one of the surging, smiling kids is being crushed beneath her wheels

"One time I know I saw a father pull a 2-year-old out of the way just in time," she said "I looked out at him, like, 'I'm so sorry,' and he just glared at me like, 'Why are you here?'"

The trucks never stopped rolling Look Observe Move Those were the convoy's standing orders -- emphasis on move "The young females, the ones with no kids, they were always, 'Go, go, go!' And I'm thinking, I'm worried about a kid in America Why shouldn't I worry about kids here?"

Horgan shifted in the café booth "I don't know if I ever hit a kid," she said carefully The ballsy soldier, who still wears her dog tags, suddenly was as tepid as her neglected tea "When I was going to war, it was to fight bad guys You're never told that there will be kids"

Women now make up about 15 percent of the armed forces and account for almost 8 percent of veterans, a number that's almost doubled in less than 10 years, according to the US Department of Veterans Affairs As more women return home, it's becoming more clear that returning to civilian life can be different for them than for men

They tend to shun veterans' services, and even counseling, often not considering themselves vets if they haven't been in direct combat Even Horgan brushes off her convoy duty through bomb-rigged territories: "I didn't really do anything," she shrugged

Yet the jarring nature of coming home also can lead to behaviors familiar to many troubled vets After her return, Horgan began drinking more, then driving at all hours, driving fast at 3 or 4 in the morning and drunk, so drunk "But I felt so alive," she said "It was all adrenaline I always got home safely because this -- driving -- was something I knew how to do really well"

By KIM ODE, Star Tribune
Last update: November 28, 2010 - 8:11 PM

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Month of the Military Child recognizes contributions of military kids

Posted: 2018-04-07  01:54 PM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 7, 2018

ST. PAUL, Minn.- The month of April is designated as the Month of the Military Child to recognize the contributions and sacrifices military children make so their family members can serve. An estimated 15,000 children in Minnesota have been affected by the deployment of a parent.

"Military children bear a lot while their family members serve," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "It is up to us to support these resilient kids and help to lessen their burden."

An event to honor military kids in Minnesota will take place April 13, 2018, at the Mall of America rotunda from 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Activities will include appearances by the Teddy Bear Band and meet and greets with Nickelodeon characters.

Forging a path to career success

Posted: 2018-03-16  08:45 AM
Col. Angela Steward-Randle ST. PAUL, Minn. - Col. Angela Steward-Randle grew up in a military family - her father served in the Army on active duty - but it was a chance encounter with a friend at college that led her to want to make the military a career.

"My story is no different than many others," Steward-Randle, the Director of Human Resources, Manpower and Personnel for the Minnesota National Guard said. "I was in college and looking for financial resources to help pay for it."

Her college friend suggested they attend a summer training with the Reserve Officer Training Corps that had no obligation and could earn them some money. The friend never ended up going, but Steward-Randle did. After earning recognition as the top honor graduate and receiving an offer of a scholarship, she was hooked.

Minnesota Guardsman Receives Award for Combating Drugs in his Community

Posted: 2018-03-09  03:13 PM
Counterdrug WOODBURY, Minn. - Staff Sgt. Benjamin Kroll, an analyst with the Minnesota National Guard's Counterdrug Task Force who is assigned to work with the Hennepin County Sherriff's Office was recognized for his achievements as the Analyst of the Year during the 2018 Minnesota Association of Crime and Intelligence Analysts Training Symposium in Woodbury, Minnesota, March 7, 2018.

Through a partnership with Minnesota law enforcement agencies throughout the state, the Minnesota National Guard Counterdrug Task Force (MNCDTF) supports the anti-drug initiatives to counter all primary drug threats and vulnerabilities through the effective application of available assets, said Maj. Jon Dotterer, Counterdrug Coordinator for the State of Minnesota. The goal for the program is to support federal, state, tribal, and local agencies in the detection, disruption, interdiction, and curtailment of illicit drugs.

Kroll is one of sixteen service members on the Counterdrug Task Force that provides this force-multiplying service to our communities against illicit drug-use. With the information that law enforcement provide through their patrols and daily operations, Kroll and his colleagues across the state assist by putting together a figurative picture with all of the gathered information which aids in identifying how to move forward with legal action to deter or prevent the sale or use of illegal narcotic drugs.

Women Opened Doors in Minnesota National Guard

Posted: 2018-03-08  09:05 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - "The battlefront is no place for women to be," said Command Sgt. Maj. Earl Kurtzweg, 125th Field Artillery, in an article published in 1976. "There are certain jobs girls say they can do, but they just can't do ... the battlefront is no place for women to be. Other countries in the world use women in combat, but the U.S. has not come around to that way of thinking." Kathy Berg, a New Ulm reporter summarized at the time. "So women in the New Ulm unit take care of personnel files and pay records and leave the fighting to the men."

The Minnesota National Guard has "come around to that way of thinking" since those early days of gender integration. In the last 44 years women have made momentous strides toward inclusion and acceptance. Their accomplishments are testimony to their fortitude and the progressive development of the Minnesota National Guard.

When an accomplished female Soldier is credited with breaking barriers she will often pass that honor to the women that preceded her. Brig. Gen. Johanna Clyborne is such a leader. She acknowledges that she is one of the first females in the Minnesota National Guard who has held key leadership roles, however she sees it differently. "I feel responsible for all women in uniform," said Clyborne. "Women before me opened the door, now I've cleared the room. It's up to the women behind me to hold the room."

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