FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
ST. PAUL, Minn. - Military families and supporters are gathering at the State Capitol Rotunda in St. Paul Tuesday morning in recognition of military youth on national "Purple Up!" day.
The program, which begins at 9 a.m. will include: recognition from The Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Richard Nash; a presentation of the Governor's letter to a child whose parent is deployed; and a ground breaking announcement from the Minnesota Military Family Tribute.
"Military children bravely face the uncertainty of their parent's safety when they are away, as well as the difficult reintegration when they return. It is important for these military-connected youth to know that their nation and community stand by them in support, and that we recognize their strength and the sacrifices they have made," said Army Cpt. Marian Belinski, Minnesota National Guard state family programs director.
"While it is the 4th annual national "Purple Up!" day, this is the first official recognition event for our military youth at the state capital, and we welcome everyone to put on purple and come out in support of these kids," said Belinski.
"While my gunner is firing on a target, my tank commander is engaging a truck using his .50 cal., and I see rounds flying from our wingman who's engaging a tank way out there," said Spc. Ted Coy, an Abrams driver with 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry Regiment. "Seeing all the tracer rounds cross while our platoon is firing at different targets at the same time is one of the coolest things I've ever seen."
The gunnery and maneuver exercise that Coy and his platoon conducted was one of the many integrated training events the 1st ABCT has been conducting during its Exportable Combat Training Capabilities exercises - a training period spanning from May 2015 to August 2015.
Posted: 2015-06-26 01:34 PM RACINOVIC, Croatia - The hobbies of a National Guardsman can become wildly different between the Military Occupational Specialty a Service member holds compared with 'real life' or what they do with their time outside of drill weekends.
Spc. Brita Hensel's days as a masonry specialist in the 851st Vertical Engineer Company may be few, but her passion and drive for service is something that shows, whether she is drilling or not.
Driven by a desire to travel she recently volunteered for a trip to a small town in Croatia as a part of the Minnesota National Guard's state partnership program to help rebuild a community center. She is a military-trained carpenter, but when she isn't building she is baking or cooking up a new recipe.
Posted: 2015-06-24 07:36 PM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Minnesota Army National Guard recruiters from Camp Ripley visited Soldiers in the field during training, June 11-19, 2015.
Personnel of the Minnesota National Guard's Recruiting and Retention Battalion stationed at Camp Ripley, ventured 'down range' to talk to Soldiers about their duties and responsibilities as National Guard Soldiers.
"Everyone in recruiting comes from a wide variety of military jobs before joining the team," said Sgt. 1st Class Joshua Derheimer, Central Minnesota Station Chief. "My MOS or Military Occupational Specialty, was originally working with the Field Artillery."
Posted: 2015-06-23 10:48 AM
To be inspired to serve in the American military is sometimes driven by movies, friends or family. For Minnesota National Guard Spc. Robert Matz it didn't come from his immediate family, but his eight uncles who have served in the U.S. Military.
"All of my father's nine brothers did some kind of military service, but I am in the first in my family to join," said Matz.
Recently he joined nearly 30 other Soldiers from the 851st Vertical Engineer Company out of Camp Ripley Training Center, Minn., for his first time overseas to Croatia for a humanitarian assistance project funded by the Office of Defense Cooperation and the National Guard State Partnership Program.