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Minnesota National Guard
National Guard, Red Cross Still In Minot

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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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