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Minnesota National Guard
National Guard, Red Cross Still In Minot


North Dakota and Minnesota National Guard members are teamed up on the streets of Minot to assist its residents in the wake of the city's worst natural disaster in history and it's no accident these two organizations are working together like clockwork

MINOT, ND - Working together has always been a trademark of North Dakota National Guard members, but when it comes to working with the American Red Cross, this is where the Guard really shines

North Dakota and Minnesota National Guard members are teamed up on the streets of Minot to assist its residents in the wake of the city's worst natural disaster in history and it's no accident these two organizations are working together like clockwork

"There and dozens of agencies from local, state and federal all working with the North Dakota National Guard and the Governor's office united through a common goalto help the Souris Valley recover as quickly as possible," said Maj. Gen. David Sprynczynatyk, North Dakota adjutant general "The Minot area needs these partnerships and as a team, we are making a difference daily in the lives of so many affected by unprecedented flooding"

"As a retired military officer, I can tell you the Guard has been truly professional and courteous and has bent over backward to allow the Red Cross to do our mission and get to areas hardest hit," said Ron Frank, director of public affairs for the Red Cross mission in Minot "The Guard is visible and very professional They make sure our vehicles are authorized They make it easy for us to do our jobs"

Frank, a retired lieutenant colonel in the Kansas National Guard and professor at Kansas State University, makes sure he tells the Red Cross hierarchy at every opportunity about the commendable job National Guard members are doing in northwestern North Dakota

He described the early days of the Souris River disaster as chaotic and critical for his organization, but it was Guard members who assisted to take the edge off the situation

The National Guard assisted with getting Red Cross emergency response vehicles through checkpoint, they helped unload initial emergency freight on behalf of the Red Cross and they worked hand-in-hand with the Red Cross moving displaced homeowners into the Minot State University Dome

When the disaster struck in June, Frank said the Red Cross had approximately30 or 40 volunteers on the ground, but that number has ballooned to between 200 and 300 staff

He said in many ways, the Red Cross is like the National Guard, at the ready because of the magnitude of this disaster And, like the Guard, Red Cross volunteers are coming from all over the country and from all types of backgrounds and are working with the residents of Minot and the Souris River Valley

Frank said it doesn't matter if Guard members are from North Dakota or Minnesota; both states are representing themselves very well here

"To the average Red Cross person, or person on the street, the uniform looks the same," Frank said "Everyone here knows them as the National Guard Whether they are from North Dakota or Minnesota, the service is essential and the general consensus is it's hot, they're doing their job and there are no complaints We appreciate that"


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Minnesota National Guard leaders visit traveling tribute in Austin

Posted: 2018-05-22  10:16 AM
Traveling Wall AUSTIN, Minn. - A replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was on display May 16-20, in Austin and leaders of the 347th Regional Support Group took the opportunity to visit during the event's closing ceremony.

The display, dubbed the American Veterans Traveling Tribute, was hosted by Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Austin and featured a near-replica of the memorial in Washington, D.C.

"It was an honor to be part of this humbling and moving tribute to our Vietnam veterans," said Col. Stephen Schemenauer. "The traveling Vietnam Wall is a powerful display, and this event provided an opportunity to meet, and thank, service members from WWII to present-day conflicts. Regardless of their branch of service, or the era or conflict in which they served, we all share a common bond."

Minnesota Aviators lead multi-state National Guard partnership for NTC rotation

Posted: 2018-05-21  03:51 PM
2-147 NTC FORT IRWIN, Calif. - The Minnesota National Guard's 2nd Battalion, 147th Assault Helicopter Battalion is working together with aviation units from four different states to provide support to the Tennessee-based 278th Armored Calvary Regiment during a rotation at National Training Center in Fort Irwin, California.

Making up Task Force Ragnar is Utah-based B Company, 1st Battalion, 211th Assault Reconnaissance Battalion; Nevada-based B Company, 1-189th General Support Aviation Battalion; Michigan-based C Company, 3-238th GSAB; and Minnesota-based A, D, E and Headquarters Companies, 2-147th AHB and F Company, 1-189th GSAB.

"Early coordination with the units across four states combined with exceptional unit leadership and motivated Soldiers helped us to quickly build the task force when we closed on Fort Irwin," said Lt. Col. Kevin O'Brien, Task Force Commander. "I was thoroughly impressed with the professionalism and teamwork of task force Soldiers. This was an outstanding training opportunity that challenged every Soldier to grow as individuals and units daily."

Deployed Minnesota Guardsman honors grandfather, Hmong heritage

Posted: 2018-05-17  09:57 AM
Brandon Xiong CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait - "My heritage is Hmong," said 21 year-old Minnesota National Guard Spec. Brandon Xiong from his desk at Camp Buehring, Kuwait. "A low-key culture that originated from southern Asia. Hmong is not a place, but it is a people."

Xiong, the eldest grandson of the late Col. Song Leng Xiong, is deployed in Kuwait as an information technician for Area Support Group - Kuwait.

"We were not nomadic, but have been in many different conflicts," said Xiong. "Many places I go, I am questioned about my nationality and when answered, end up being even more confused. There is a movie called, "Gran Torino", where Clint Eastwood is introduced to the Hmong culture and I think it portrays the Hmong people not so terribly."

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.

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