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Minnesota National Guard
1st Brigade Combat Team moves forward with joint training

CAMP SAMOUD, Kuwait (November 02, 2011) — Col Eric D Kerska, commanding officer for the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division toured with the Kuwait national guard Oct 27, at Camp Samoud, Kuwait

During the tour Kerska discussed future plans of joint training with Maj AL-Anzi Saleh, the commanding officer of the 1st Mechanized Battalion, Kuwait national guard

“Well, the United States has been involved in this region for a long time—Kuwaitis are our friends,” said Kerska “Anything we can learn from them they can learn from us”

Saleh, at the end of the tour, extended an invitation for Kerska to comeback and meet with other staff officers

"I look forward to training and collaborating with allied forces in the future," said Saleh



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Although US and Kuwait are thousands of miles apart, both the Minnesota National Guard and the Kuwaiti military use much of the same equipment

"We have similar equipment, so in the future we are looking forward to have the chance to learn the different techniques that the Kuwaitis use," said Kerska

Kerska set foot in Kuwait in 1991 on the first of three deployments

"From what I see since the first time I was here a lot has changed," said Kerska

The 1st Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division is currently deployed to Kuwait in support of Operation New Dawn This is the largest deployment for the Minnesota National Guard since World War II

The Red Bull guardsmen are here offering base management and providing convoy escort security in the final months of the drawdown of US force in Iraq

By 1st Brigade Combat Team, 34th Red Bull Infantry Division

Article source
http://www.centcom.mil/news/1-34th-bct-makes-plans-to-move-forward-with-joint-training



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Camp Ripley strikes first before wildfire season

Posted: 2017-03-24  10:19 AM
Controlled burn CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Every spring Camp Ripley begins its annual controlled burn program to help reduce the risk of wildfire during training.

"Usually the burns are completed every spring before the summer annual training season begins," said Tim Notch, training area coordinator on Camp Ripley. "However, the warmer weather conditions provide a nice opportunity for preventative burns earlier this season."

As in years past Camp Ripley will conduct controlled burns on approximately 13,000 acres of the 53,000-acre military reservation. The burns are done in coordination with the staffs of the Camp Ripley Department of Public Works and the Camp Ripley Environmental Department along with support from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.



Minnesota Guardsman earns recognition through Leads 2 Enlistment program

Posted: 2017-03-23  09:46 AM
Pfc Trevor Nelson DULUTH, Minn. - Pfc. Trevor Nelson received the Minnesota Distinguished Recruiting Ribbon and a Minnesota Recruiting and Retention Battalion medallion for excellence from Command Sgt. Maj. Curtis Serbus, March 18, 2017, at the Duluth Armory. Nelson earned these awards as part of the online referral system, Leads 2 Enlistment for referring four friends who have joined the Minnesota National Guard.

"I talked to some buddies in my school about the Guard. They liked the benefits, so I put their info in the app and let my recruiter take over." said Nelson. "I thought it would be fun to serve with friends and help them figure out their path in life."

Nelson is currently a senior at Cloquet Senior High School and assigned to the Recruit Sustainment Program in Duluth. He attended basic training at Fort Benning in the summer of 2016 with follow-on training in the summer of 2017 to become an infantryman.



Litchfield and Local Veteran Honor Gen. John Vessey at Armory Open House

Posted: 2017-03-10  08:50 AM
Vessey Bust LITCHFIELD, Minn. -Bruce Cottington, a Navy veteran of WWII and Korea, donated a bronze bust of Gen. John W. Vessey, Jr. to the Litchfield National Guard unit during the armory's public open house event March 4. Cottington, a Litchfield resident, commands the Minnesota Chapter of the Veterans of Underage Military Service. VUMS members enlisted in the military prior to the minimum age requirement in order to serve their country during WWII. Cottington received the bust from Vessey, a fellow VUMS member. Both enlisted in the military at the age of 16.

The highlight of the 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion open house was the unveiling of the sculpture. The unit was very supportive when Cottington proposed donating the sculpture. The Litchfield community has always been very supportive of the National Guard over the years, so the open house was a chance to say 'thanks' to their neighbors. "This was a great opportunity to honor Bruce and to honor Gen. Vessey," said B Co., 334th Brigade Engineer Battalion Commander, Capt. Seth Goreham. Bravo Company also has a tight relationship with the local American Legion and VFW. Many Litchfield citizens are former members of Bravo Company, or the unit's predecessors A Co, 682nd Engineer Battalion, and the 849th Mobility Augmentation Company.



Camp Ripley welcomes new command sergeant major

Posted: 2017-03-08  03:29 PM
CSM Erickson CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The garrison command team of Camp Ripley, family, friends and colleagues from the Minnesota National Guard attended a Change of Responsibility ceremony between Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Worden and Command Sgt. Maj. Matt Erickson, March 5, 2017, at Camp Ripley.

The ceremony was an official "passing of the sword" from one senior noncommissioned officer to the next and assumption of the duties and responsibilities that go along with the position of Garrison Command Sergeant Major.

As with many military ceremonies those in attendance welcomed Erickson as a new member of the team and bid farewell, recognized and thanked Worden for his service.



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