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Minnesota National Guard
First Timers

For some of the Soldiers of the 34th Annual Norwegian Exchange Contingent this marks the first time they have ever adventured outside the United States boarders

"I love it; it is a really fun experience," Private First Class Shane A Lang, Artilleryman 1st Battalion 125th Battery, Leverne, Minn "Not everyone can do it, because of their job and other things in their civilian life It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to get paid to go to another country"

Other Soldiers still are experiencing the effects of traveling to another country

"It is wonderful, I think the training has been great," said Private First Class, Daniel L Gronewold, cannon-crew member, Company A 1st Battalion 125th Leverne, Minn, "I am still taking it all in"

Private First Class Justin G Donnell, Infantryman, 2nd Battalion 135th Infantry, Owatonna, Minn experienced his birthday during the exchange "I am not homesick because the cadre and people in the platoons seems really nice and they make me feel at home," said Donnell "The country is warmer, even though it is farther north, that seems kind of odd"

A lot of the Soldiers in the Exchange Contingent are enjoying many different aspects of traveling overseas

"I get to see different landscape, different scenery and get to train totally different than usually, it's a good change of pace," said Private First Class Travis J Thiner, Artilleryman, 1st Battery 125th Field Artillery, Leverne, Minnesota," I like meeting other people Norway is a beautiful country The food is different, but you can get use to it It is kind of a cultural shock"

Regardless of the cultural barriers with daily living and training, all the Soldiers are finding ways to enjoy their time in Norway

"The uniforms are different from ours, I like the layers, but I will enjoy getting back into my Army Combat Uniform (ACUs)," said Donnell "I really like the country side and it is really quite This exchange is like being on vacation, being infantry I thought I would never get to experience something like this"

"It is really cold here!" Spec Kelli J Zellner, combat medic, 834th Aviation Support Company, St Paul, Minn "All the people from Norway are very hospitable The training is beneficial to this point and I look forward to the training to come"

The Soldiers and Airmen of the 34th Annual Norwegian Exchange Contingent will be back in Minnesota in late February

By Sgt Lynette Hoke

Main Effort:
Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange

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Red Bulls Kickoff Division Warfighter

Posted: 2018-06-13  01:38 PM
DIV WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - "A Warfighter is an exercise that allows the Division to evaluate their ability to maneuver assets in a battle," said Master Sgt. Greg Weaver, the Operations Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge for the Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion. "It is designed to focus on particular areas and specific objectives to be evaluated or tested."

The Division has geared its' planning and training efforts in preparation for Warfighter since July 2017. Coordinating transportation for Soldiers and equipment was often on the mind of Maj. David Johansson, the logistics officer for the 34th ID. With the coordination of Johansson and his team, troops and equipment all converged on Camp Atterbury, enlisting the help of 89 railcars, 280 tractor-trailers, and nearly 50 buses for the movement.

"I like to say my job is to 'quiet the noise'". Johansson continued, "The noise being a real life logistical problem that could impede the exercise."

Minnesota-based aviation unit takes part in Warfighter Exercise

Posted: 2018-06-08  11:59 AM
34ECAB WFX CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. - More than 150 Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade are here participating in a multi-echelon training event, Warfighter Exercise 18-5, May 30 to June 15.

The exercise, which is part live and part virtual, is testing the St. Paul, Minnesota-based aviation unit's ability to conduct operations and mission command in a high-intensity, complex operating environment. Soldiers are being challenged to take decisive action as they focus on air-ground operations -- or synchronizing and integrating aviation operations into the scheme of maneuver planned and conducted by forces on the ground.

In this case, the units on the ground are being commanded by the Rosemount, Minnesota-based 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, which is also participating in the exercise.

148th Fighter Wing hosts STEM program for Duluth-area students

Posted: 2018-06-05  08:52 AM
Starbase Duluth DULUTH, Minn. - Dozens of community and industry leaders passionate about helping children become more engaged in science, technology, engineering and math gathered at the 148th Fighter Wing in Duluth, Minn., May 24, 2018, to see what STARBASE Minnesota Duluth is doing for young students in the area.

STARBASE is a Department of Defense youth program that engages students in STEM studies. The program began in 1991, and STARBASE Minnesota was founded in 1993 in St. Paul, which expanded to Duluth in July 2017.

Currently, the school program is open to fifth-grade students, said Charity S. Rupp, the director of STARBASE Minnesota Duluth. The summer camp will serve students in 4-6th grade. Eventually, she hopes the program will expand into STARBASE 2.0 to serve middle school students as an after school program during the academic school year.

Minnesota National Guard leaders visit traveling tribute in Austin

Posted: 2018-05-22  10:16 AM
Traveling Wall AUSTIN, Minn. - A replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was on display May 16-20, in Austin and leaders of the 347th Regional Support Group took the opportunity to visit during the event's closing ceremony.

The display, dubbed the American Veterans Traveling Tribute, was hosted by Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Austin and featured a near-replica of the memorial in Washington, D.C.

"It was an honor to be part of this humbling and moving tribute to our Vietnam veterans," said Col. Stephen Schemenauer. "The traveling Vietnam Wall is a powerful display, and this event provided an opportunity to meet, and thank, service members from WWII to present-day conflicts. Regardless of their branch of service, or the era or conflict in which they served, we all share a common bond."

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