History
Minnesota National Guard
The Minnesota National Guard celebrates
Native American Heritage


The Minnesota National Guard celebrates Native American Heritage.  American Indians have eagerly served in the military for more than 200 years, in spite of a government which did not always keep its word to their ancestors.  As early as the 18th century, American Indians were recognized by American military leaders. General George Washington in 1778 stated he thought the American Indians would be great scouts and light troops. Since then, American Indians have been involved in every war since the War of 1812. During the Vietnam War, more than 90 percent of American Indians were volunteers.

While there are few circumstances of documented overt prejudice while in uniform, Navajo Code Talkers were sometimes mistaken by their own men for Japanese soldiers. But as one code talker recalled, Navajos had a chance to prove wrong the bigots back home; the military prized them for speaking their own language. For many American Indian veterans, the honor of defending their country overrode all other considerations. Currently, American Indians have the highest record of service per capita in comparison to other ethnic groups. It is deeply rooted in their culture to serve their country and they value a proud warrior tradition. At the end of the 20th century there were almost 190,000 American Indian Veterans.

Veterans Day and Thanksgiving are two popular holidays celebrated every year in the month of November. During this month of November, let's take time to reminisce and be grateful to our American Indian service members who have contributed to the success of the United States of America and its military.



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LAX-4-LIFE partnership teaches Lacrosse, leadership and life skills to Native American Youth
07/31/2013

2013 Native American Lax-4-Life Camp
07/23/2013

Native American LAX-4-LIFE Camp Update: Story, photos and b-roll video available
07/31/2012

National Guard supports Native American youth at lacrosse camp
07/27/2012

Native American LAX-4-LIFE Camp Partnership
07/20/2012

Minnesota National Guard joins the Nation in observing American Indian Heritage Month
08/20/2011

Returning vets of color face unique challenges
07/05/2010

Camp Ripley hosts Nation to Nation event
10/11/2005



Helpful Links

Historical moments of Native Americans in service

American Indian Heritage Foundation

Bureau of Indian Affairs






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Latest News

Lynx honor military with Military Appreciation Night

Posted: 2014-08-20  10:29 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn.- The Minnesota Lynx hosted their third annual Military Appreciation Night Aug. 12. The Lynx donated tickets to active, reservist, National Guard and retired members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families from across the state of Minnesota.

The night featured various pregame activities for these military families and also included a pregame on-court flag display by members representing all five branches of the U.S. Armed Forces. Many of the military members involved with the detail enjoyed the time they had to represent.



Minnesota National Guard promotes its first African American general

Posted: 2014-08-19  08:45 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn.- For the family of Brig. Gen. David Hamlar Jr., promotion ceremonies have been a normal event throughout his career. However, his most recent ceremony is different because of the special significance pinning the star on his shoulder means to the Minnesota National Guard.

Hamlar was promoted to Brigadier General, Monday, August 18, at the Minnesota History Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. Hamlar is the first African American to achieve the rank of Brigadier General in the Minnesota National Guard.

"Col. Hamlar is not only an extraordinary leader in the Minnesota National Guard, he is an accomplished surgeon specializing in the reconstruction of skull deformities and brain tumors," said Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Richard C. Nash. "Hamlar's talent and both military and civilian skills makes him an incredible asset to not only our organization, but to the community as a whole."



Minnesota National Guard to celebrate first African American General

Posted: 2014-08-15  02:36 PM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 15

ST. PAUL, Minn. - Air Col. David Hamlar Jr. is scheduled to be promoted to Brigadier General during a pinning ceremony, Aug. 18, in St. Paul. Hamlar is the first African American to achieve the rank of Brigadier General in the Minnesota National Guard.

"Col. Hamlar is not only an extraordinary leader in the Minnesota National Guard, he is an accomplished surgeon specializing in the reconstruction of skull deformities and brain tumors," said Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Richard C. Nash. "Hamlar's talent and both military and civilian skills makes him an incredible asset to not only our organization, but to the community as a whole."



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