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1st ABCT bids farewell to one leader, welcomes another
BLOOMINGTON, Minn- The Minnesota National Guard's 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team bid farewell to its most recent commander while welcoming a new leader to preside over the brigade during a change of command ceremony at the Bloomington Armory, June 13, 2014
"It has been an honor and privilege to have served with you as your commander," said outgoing commander Col Jon Jensen to the Soldiers of the 1st ABCT "You made this job fun because of your professionalism, your enthusiasm and your willingness to get better at every opportunity"
Jensen, a member of the Minnesota National Guard for more than 31 years, assumed command of the 1st ABCT in July of 2012, shortly after the unit returned from missions in Kuwait and Iraq in what was the largest deployment of Minnesota Red Bulls since World War II
"We have been a nation at war," said 34th Infantry Division Commander Brig Gen Neal Loidolt "Through the efforts of the outstanding leadership of Col Jensen, the brigade remains a ready weapon in the strategic arsenal of the Army, prepared to provide whatever is needed domestically and abroad"
Incoming 1st ABCT commander Col Robert Intress accepted the task of keeping the brigade prepared - and the many other responsibilities that come with a major command - after the brigade colors were passed from Jensen to Loidolt, then from Loidolt to Intress
"Bob is a proven leader uniquely qualified to lead the brigade through the challenging times ahead," said Loidolt "He has the experience of command, at all levels, from platoon through battalion He has the technical skills developed over many assignments, even going to the extreme of attending and graduating from the Tank Commander's Course as an infantry officer"
"Col Jensen, I am sincerely thankful for the dedication, commitment and leadership you have shown this organization over the years" said Intress "You have led this brigade with distinction and I will ensure that the legacy you and your predecessors have fostered is built upon and never tarnished"
Following the ceremony, Loidolt presented the Legion of Merit to Jensen for "dedication to mission accomplishment, direct leadership and exemplary service"
June 18, 2014 by Staff Sgt Patrick Loch
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs
Posted: 2017-04-26 02:09 PM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The Department of Defense announced that Camp Ripley was selected as the winner of the Secretary of Defense Environmental Award for Natural Resources Conservation, Large Installation.
The awards recognize individuals, teams and installations for their exceptional environmental achievements and innovative, cost-effective environmental practices.
"The winners' efforts strengthen the Department of Defense's position as a resourceful environmental steward, both at home and abroad, and demonstrate our continued commitment to fulfilling mission needs through advanced environmental practices and technologies," stated James A. MacStravic, performing the duties of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics.
Posted: 2017-04-26 10:57 AM COTTAGE GROVE, Minn. - Staff Sgt. Nicquie Neely has been working with victims of sexual assault for four years in the Minnesota National Guard and also volunteers as a victim advocate in the community. As a victim advocate, it's her job to believe and support victims through a difficult process that can often involve extensive medical care and legal proceedings.
"Ever since I joined the Guard and heard about the SHARP program and learned what a victim advocate was, I always wanted to be one," said Neely. "And then I learned that you had to be an E-6 to be in that position, so the minute I got promoted I asked my commander if I could go to the training."
Neely is a combat medic and the full-time training and administration NCO with Company C, 134th Brigade Support Battalion. In addition to military victim advocate training, Neely also attends regular training with the civilian organization she volunteers for - SOS Sexual Violence Services in Ramsey County.
Posted: 2017-04-24 10:43 AM Washington - Members of the Minnesota National Guard and the Air Force Reserve traveled to Washington D.C. with the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (also known as the JCRC), to visit the Holocaust Museum, April 4, 2017, to honor the victims of the Holocaust. Also, traveling with this group were St. Paul and Minneapolis police officers along with students from various high schools around the state. For those in uniform that day, it was an opportunity to see, hear and experience the stories of victims and survivors of the Holocaust.
Each Service member who attended was asked to bring back a summary of their experience in the form of a presentation, professional discussion or briefing to their respective unit in order to help other Guard members better understand and remember that horrible event, to honor the courage of the victims and survivors, and to remain vigilant as members of the U.S. military.
"The honor and privilege of accompanying members of the Minnesota National Guard to the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. met so many goals," said Steve Hunegs, the executive director of the JCRC. "I wanted to reinforce the importance of the commitment of the U.S. military to democracy. After all, it was the Allies that defeated Nazi Germany and ultimately put an end to the Holocaust."
Posted: 2017-04-19 02:15 PM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - It was a challenging and rewarding two weeks for members attending the Army National Guard Funeral Honors Instructor Course, April 1-14, at Camp Ripley.
Soldiers of National Guard units from all over the United States took part in the course designed to educate team leaders in a variety of funeral honor detail tasks, traditions and responsibilities.
"It's a stressful course, but for our job, we have to be prepared to do our job under stress; and we all really benefitted from that," said Class Honor Grad, Sgt. Ryan Valline of the 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 136th Infantry.