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Minnesota National Guard
Vigilant Guard Exercise Begins with Accountability

Vigilant Guard Exercise Begins with Accountability CAMP RIPLEY, Minn - More than 1100 Minnesota National Guardsmen, 320 other military members from across the country, and nearly 500 members of state and local emergency response agencies are participating in the Vigilant Guard exercise at three venues across the state: Duluth, Camp Ripley and StPaul Aug 24-28, 2015

"Our exercise is a state activation to several fictitious scenarios that are staged in the Duluth area," said Capt Sara Behr, acting Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs Officer at Camp Ripley "While the scenario is directly relevant to agencies in Duluth, each site plays a part in the overall exercise," continue Behr

At Camp Ripley, members of the 147th Human Resources Company, 347th Regional Support Group are assigned the task of in-processing and accounting for the personnel and equipment being gathered from several different agencies and states while they respond to simulated hazards on Camp Ripley

"Our mission is the Joint Reception-Staging-Onward movement and Integration, or JRSOI, for each unit and organization operation in our area," said 1st Lt Takeisha Hunt of the 147th Human Resources Company

The JRSOI is a process of accounting for personnel and equipment needed to accomplish the mission requirements while ensuring safe and effective functionality of all assets moving into and returning from the exercise

"We lead personnel through the process of verifying their readiness before moving to the mission; making sure that all administrative needs are being met so as not to reduce the overall effectiveness of the team," said Spc Joshlyn Duevel, JRSOI Briefer

"It's a great command and control tool for eliminating any unnecessary distractions that could come up during the excitement of an activation such as this," said Capt Jeremiah Hellenbrand, of the Wisconsin National Guard

Stations include; vehicle inspection, personnel accountability, medical, assignments, logistics and communications
"It's a big process to build up into  Our training for this exercise began ten months ago to verify that each step in this in-processing goes smoothly," added Hunt

The 347th regional Support Group is operating as the central hub for military units, state agencies and community first responders to operate with as they react to the exercise organized to enhance the collective cooperation between the National Guard and interagency partners

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Governor Mark Dayton installs new Minnesota National Guard Adjutant General

Posted: 2017-11-04  04:16 PM
TAG installation ST. PAUL, Minn. - Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton administered the oath of office to Maj. Gen. Jon A. Jensen, installing him as the Minnesota National Guard's 31st Adjutant General during a ceremony in St. Paul, November 4, 2017.

"General Jensen has been a tremendous leader of the Minnesota National Guard throughout his years of dedicated service," said Governor Dayton. "He has served in two top leadership positions, as the Commanding General of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division, and also as the Chief of Staff at the Guard's Joint Force Headquarters. I am confident that he will continue to provide the same outstanding leadership as his predecessor, General Rick Nash."

Jensen most recently served as the Commanding General of the 34th Red Bull Infantry Division. He previously held positions as Deputy Commanding General, United States Army Africa and Southern European Task Force, Minnesota National Guard Director of the Joint Staff and Minnesota National Guard Assistant Adjutant General - Army.

Guard Heritage Suffers with Loss of Artillery Unit

Posted: 2017-10-04  11:22 AM
ETAB ANOKA, Minn. - The Minnesota National Guard lost one of its most historically significant units when the 151st Artillery's E Battery, (Target Acquisition) cased its colors in a ceremony at the Anoka High School Aug. 19, 2017.

The Target Acquisition Battery (ETAB), 151st Field Artillery is one of the oldest and most decorated units in the Minnesota National Guard and the 34th Infantry Division. "Both Minnesota and the Division lose the proud lineage that goes back to Civil War days, through WW1 and WW2, and had a significant amount of battle streamers," said 151st Field Artillery Battalion Commander, Lt. Col. Patrick Cornwell.

The 151st Field Artillery draws its lineage from the 1st Regiment, Minnesota Heavy Artillery of 1864 which fought two major campaigns in Tennessee during the Civil War.

In one month: Minnesota Guardsmen support Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria

Posted: 2017-09-29  02:25 PM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - In the span of a few weeks, three major hurricanes hit different parts of the southern United States, causing widespread damage and destruction and requiring the response of agencies around the country. The Minnesota National Guard is one of the many organizations that have responded, sending Soldiers and Airmen to Texas, Florida, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico.

"This is the most gratifying deployment of my career," said Capt. Jeremy Maxey with the 133rd Airlift Wing who was called back from his vacation early to go to the Virgin Islands. "It means a lot to be able to actually directly help people. It's why I serve. Throughout my career I've deployed numerous times, but this is the one where you actually see the people you serve."

The start of the month brought the first request for assistance. On Sept. 1, two CH-47 Chinook helicopters and 11 personnel from the St. Cloud-based B Company, 2nd General Support Aviation Battalion, 211th Aviation Regiment left for Texas following Hurricane Harvey to transport personnel and equipment in support of response efforts.

Finding fellowship in the sacred mission

Posted: 2017-09-26  12:02 PM
Minnesota National Guard CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - One of the most difficult, most sacred, honorable duties in the military is one that people don't often think about. It takes compassion, empathy, care, and requires great resilience. It is one that when called upon to train for, they hope to rarely perform because it means another Soldier has been lost. It is the duty of casualty notification officer and casualty assistance officer.

About 45 Minnesota Army National Guard Soldiers came to Camp Ripley, Minnesota, on September 21-22, 2017, for a Reset Seminar to find fellowship in one specific thing they have in common: delivering the worst news in the Army.

When a Soldier dies at home or overseas, CNOs and CAOs must notify and help families through the process, including paperwork, benefits, and funeral arrangements.

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