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Minnesota National Guard
Captain Stacey Meiser raises flag at Twins game

The Minnesota Twins were on a roll " and not just because they thumped a division foe 10-3 on April 16 Going into the Friday night game, they held a respectable early-season record of 7-4, but fans might have been noticing something other than just the wins in a brand new, outdoor venue that was quickly putting the Metrodome to shame For the fourth time, in what was quickly becoming a pre-game tradition, the sellout crowd watched as Captain Stacey Meiser raised the flag in right field


For Stacey, who had deployed to all seven continents throughout her 14-year career, the moment was a fitting reward for an accomplished veteran

"It was more emotional than I thought it would be," Stacey said "It's a good tradition that they [Twins organization] started, and the crowd seemed to like it"

It was the first home-stand over a weekend for the Twins, and the twilight game was something fans hadn't witnessed since the completion of the Metrodome 28 years ago

"It was the first night game, and it's such a beautiful field," Stacey said, "with the lights, and seeing downtown at night"

Only a few months back, Stacey wasn't envisioning a peaceful night watching a ballgame, as she was in the midst of one of her many deployments with the Minnesota Air National Guard After the Haiti earthquake on Jan 12, 2010, her unit, the 133rd Airlift Wing, was one of the first to arrive as part of Operation Unified Response

"We were supposed to do two weeks [annual training] in Puerto Rico," Stacey said "Instead, the earthquake happened on Thursday, we were there on Saturday"

When her unit arrived, ready to transport personnel and cargo to the devastated island, none were prepared for the challenges before them

"It was like being there during the first night of war," Stacey said "There was no plan, no communications We just had to figure it out

"It was the longest two weeks of my life The most intense, but very rewarding"

Working 14-16 hours a day, Stacey helped set up a schedule so their replacements could know what to expect while working in the earthquake's chaotic aftermath

"I didn't actually get to fly, I was too busy with ground jobs," Stacey said "But I dealt with some very unorthodox situations " airplanes from all over the world, who also had no plans, but were figuring it out as they went"

A few months later, when the Twins organization and the Minnesota National Guard started the flag raiser tradition, Stacey was a pretty obvious choice

The Lineup:

Why did you join the Air National Guard?

I was always interested in airplanes, growing up in Waconia I'd watch the C-130s fly over and thought, "I'll be a pilot, too" I also wanted to see the world, and the government paid me to do both

So when did you enlist and what did you do?

I enlisted in 1996 as an aircraft mechanic for C-130s In 2000, I went to flight engineer training and began monitoring the aircraft systems to keep them operating

When did you receive your commission?

I was an E-6 (Tech Sergeant) before I was commissioned in 2005 Prior to that, I completed my civilian pilot training at St Cloud State University as well as the Air Force's pilot training, then began flying C-130s

What do you currently do with the 133rd?

I conduct standardization and evaluation procedures to get new pilots qualified to fly We work at the International Airport in Minneapolis/St Paul

And you've been deployed before Haiti? Several times Iraq, Afghanistan, I've been to all seven continents

Even Antarctica?

Yes, our mission was to resupply the scientists working in the South Pole I helped to maintain the airplane, and on occasion we flew with the crew during refueling missions

What did you think of the remote destination?

It was very cold, but it's the most beautiful place in the world " and I've been to a lot of places You expect a frozen wasteland but it's not There are mountains and animals along the coast

Did the cold affect the planes at all?

It does If it gets too cold, the hydraulic fluids turn to gel But the planes are equipped to deal with that But when you're near the coast, and remember this was December, during their summer, and the highest the temperature gets is between 20 and 30 degrees I saw 86 below zero at the pole

And you're married?

I've been married since 2003 My husband, who's also a military guy, proposed in Kuwait He hauled this pristine, white teddy bear across the ocean He also brought wedding magazines, so we spent the deployment planning the wedding!

Posted: January 22, 2011 2:42 pm CT
By Patrick Loch

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Minnesota Guardsmen learn survival skills, train with Norwegian counterparts

Posted: 2018-07-03  01:36 PM
NOREX 45 Over the course of 10 days, 100 Soldiers and Airmen from the Minnesota National Guard who traveled to Norway June 17-26, 2018, for the 45th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange learned valuable survival skills and shared their knowledge with members of the Norwegian Home Guard. This year's exchange was the second to take place during the summer months in the history of the longest-running military partnership between two nations.

"It was a great experience for both the Minnesota National Guard and the Norwegian Home Guard," said Capt. 'Kiwi' HorgA�ien, the senior Norwegian instructor. "A cultural exchange, a social exchange and military exchange all packed into one."

The 45th exchange got off to a late start, with flight delays causing the trip to be shortened from its normal length of two weeks. The delay meant that the Minnesota Guardsmen jumped right into training, heading out to the field after just a few hours of sleep.

133rd Airlift Wing Emphasizes Combat Readiness Training

Posted: 2018-06-29  10:48 AM
Alpena ALPENA, Michigan - Approximately 300 U.S. Air Force Airmen from the 133rd Airlift Wing participated in a readiness exercise at the Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center, Alpena, Mich.

The exercise, tagged as Iron Ore, was designed test the Airmen abilities to set up operations at an unfamiliar location and receive in depth training on Ability-To-Survive and Operate (ATSO) principles while supporting airlift and aeromedical flight operations.

To ensure mission success and readiness, Airmen had to complete training at home station prior to leaving for Alpena. Some of this training included weapons qualification, gas mask fit testing, Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) familiarization, self-aid and buddy care and career field training.

Red Bulls Kickoff Division Warfighter

Posted: 2018-06-13  01:38 PM
DIV WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - "A Warfighter is an exercise that allows the Division to evaluate their ability to maneuver assets in a battle," said Master Sgt. Greg Weaver, the Operations Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge for the Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion. "It is designed to focus on particular areas and specific objectives to be evaluated or tested."

The Division has geared its' planning and training efforts in preparation for Warfighter since July 2017. Coordinating transportation for Soldiers and equipment was often on the mind of Maj. David Johansson, the logistics officer for the 34th ID. With the coordination of Johansson and his team, troops and equipment all converged on Camp Atterbury, enlisting the help of 89 railcars, 280 tractor-trailers, and nearly 50 buses for the movement.

"I like to say my job is to 'quiet the noise'". Johansson continued, "The noise being a real life logistical problem that could impede the exercise."

Minnesota-based aviation unit takes part in Warfighter Exercise

Posted: 2018-06-08  11:59 AM
34ECAB WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - More than 150 Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade are here participating in a multi-echelon training event, Warfighter Exercise 18-5, May 30 to June 15.

The exercise, which is part live and part virtual, is testing the St. Paul, Minnesota-based aviation unit's ability to conduct operations and mission command in a high-intensity, complex operating environment. Soldiers are being challenged to take decisive action as they focus on air-ground operations -- or synchronizing and integrating aviation operations into the scheme of maneuver planned and conducted by forces on the ground.

In this case, the units on the ground are being commanded by the Rosemount, Minnesota-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, which is also participating in the exercise.

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