/*********************************************** * Chrome CSS Drop Down Menu- (c) Dynamic Drive DHTML code library (www.dynamicdrive.com) * This notice MUST stay intact for legal use * Visit Dynamic Drive at http://www.dynamicdrive.com/ for full source code ***********************************************/
History
Minnesota National Guard
Honor to the lost

Chris Ring Gold Star CAMP RIPLEY, Minn - A US Navy veteran on a mission to swim the Mississippi stopped at Camp Ripley Tuesday to meet with some of the families his trek aims to honor

"Gold Star" families have lost a member in military conflict The name comes from the gold star some display in their home, to symbolize the son or daughter who was killed Veteran Chris Ring plans to swim the entire length of the river in order to raise awareness for Gold Star families who lost loved ones in post-9/11 conflicts

On Tuesday, Ring and his support team from nonprofit Legacies Alive paused their journey for a press event with some of the Gold Star families from the nearby area Ring said his goal with the swim is to be able to walk up to any random person on the street, and have them know what a Gold Star family is Legacies Alive co-founder Mike Viti said the idea for the group came from conversations with Gold Star families, when he asked them to name a thing they needed help with

"The thing that most of them pointed to was,'The day that I fear the most is the day my loved one's name isn't said,' he said "Really, their legacy dies with the last memory"

By performing a feat as intense as swimming the Mississippi, Ring hopes to keep the plight of Gold Star families from being ignored, and to keep the memory of the fallen from fading away

"We can't bring them back," he said "But we can honor them"

After the press conference, the families told the waiting media about their loved ones who were killed, so that their stories might be heard by others

Bill Smith of Grey Eagle talked about his son Paul, who received the Medal of Honor posthumously for his actions during the 2003 invasion of Iraq Paul Smith was a combat engineer when the unit he commanded came under attack near Saddam International Airport Paul took over a 50 caliber machine gun for another soldier who was wounded, and drove off dozens of enemy soldiers before being hit multiple times and then killed

Bill Smith said the men his son died for were like family to Paul He worked them hard, but he loved them

"He called them 'his boys,'" he said

Thomas McElveen from Little Falls talked about his son Anthony, a Marine killed by an improvised explosive device at Fallujah in Iraq McElveen is a Desert Storm veteran himself, but it was the anecdotes told by the men in Anthony's unit that helped him understand what his son's experience was like

"Listening to the stories from his buddies was what stunned me," he said

Anthony's friends told McElveen about how his son could lighten up even the most tense situation with a well-timed joke Once, he and his squad were creeping up on a suspected enemy position, unsure if they would be plunged into a firefight without warning Suddenly, Anthony shouted, "Quick, act like a bush!"

Despite his mischievous nature, Anthony was excellent at what he did The same kid who had a talent for spending time in the penalty box as a high school hockey player also received a commendation for capturing enemy combatants trying to set up an IED

Peg Manea's son Jonathan served in Iraq in Explosive Ordinance Disposal Peg said Jonathan was destined to work in EOD As a boy, he poured gasoline down the family driveway and lit it on fire as it flowed down the slope to see what would happen

Jonathan took his own life while home on leave Peg said she wanted her son to be remembered for his service and his love for family

"He loved being in the Army," she said

July 7, 2015
Zach Kayser, Brainerd Dispatch


ZACH KAYSER may be reached at 218-855-5860 or ZachKayser@brainerddispatch.com Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ZWKayser

Article source
http://www.brainerddispatch.com/news/3781434-honor-lost



Articles archive

In The News archive

Media Advisory archive

Latest News

Securing the Bold North: Minnesota National Guard supports Super Bowl LII

Posted: 2018-02-02  10:45 PM
Super Bowl 52 MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - More than 400 Minnesota National Guardsmen are supporting security efforts in Minneapolis ahead of Super Bowl 52.

"This is what we do," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "When the local community can't meet the public safety needs, they come to the Guard. We're their normal partner, we're a natural partner, and we're their preferred partner when it comes to filling in the gaps that they can't fill."

At the request of the city, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton authorized the Minnesota National Guard to provide support to security efforts leading up to and during Super Bowl 52. The Guardsmen are providing direct support to and working alongside law enforcement officers from across the state. Like their civilian law enforcement partners, Minnesota Guardsmen are focused on ensuring a safe experience for the residents and visitors who are attending the Super Bowl festivities.



100 Years Ago, Camp Cody's "Grand Old Man" formed 34th Infantry Division

Posted: 2018-01-18  12:59 PM
Gen. Augustus Blocksom Decorated veteran Augustus Blocksom was a man of his time, but times were changing. He exemplified Progressive Era America prior to the Great War. Blocksom participated in all the major US Army campaigns for nearly a half-century. He fought American Indians, Spaniards, Chinese and Filipinos. He brought that experience to Camp Cody, New Mexico where he assembled units from across the mid-West to form the 34th Infantry Division in 1917.



Iowa Red Bull takes command of 34th Infantry Division

Posted: 2017-12-13  10:11 AM
Minnesota National Guard JOHNSTON, Iowa - Brig. Gen. Benjamin J. Corell, Deputy Adjutant General of the Iowa National Guard, assumed command of the 34th Infantry Division "Red Bulls" during a ceremony in Rosemount, Minnesota, on December 9, 2017.

Headquartered in Minnesota, the division has been commanded almost-exclusively by members of the Minnesota National Guard since 1968.

"Typically there's been very few people who have been allowed to command the 34th Infantry Division that didn't come from the state of Minnesota," Corell said.



Minnesota-based aviation unit honors storied division, enters into new, 'expeditionary' era

Posted: 2017-12-12  11:29 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - Soldiers of the Minnesota National Guard's 34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade (ECAB), who recently celebrated a year full of achievements, have embraced a new name: Red Devils.

The St. Paul-based unit hosted its annual aviation brigade ball Dec. 9, at the Envision Event Center in Oakdale, Minnesota, where the unit's new logo was unveiled.

Soldiers of the 34th ECAB, which falls under and supports the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, will continue to wear the Red Bull insignia on their uniforms. However, they will now be known and referred to as the Red Devils, a name that pays homage to the division's historical accomplishments and fierce warfighting.



Article archive
 
top