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Minnesota National Guard
682nd Soldiers, families enjoy picnic prior to deployment

Family picnic WILMAR, Minn - Deploying Soldiers from the 682nd Engineer Battalion enjoyed a picnic with loved ones at Robbins Island Park in Willmar, Minn, September 11, 2015

The picnic was sponsored by "Serving Our Troops" and coincided with the unit's final drill weekend before deploying to Kuwait Families of the Soldiers were able to socialize and build a support system to take on the challenges that come with a deployment

That weekend, Soldiers and their families also took part in the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon's Family Prep Academy, a nationally recognized one-day program geared to improve the quality of life for everyone affected by a deployment

"It will help not only spouses, but also parents, siblings and children understand and be able to cope with the deployment of their loved one," said Lt. Col. Keith Ferdon, commander of the 682nd Engineer Battalion

The Family Prep Academy links participants with subject matter experts, previously-deployed Service members and representatives from military, government and civilian agencies Those interactions ensure that Soldiers and their loved ones are aware of the resources available to them during a deployment

Ferdon noted that the academy is a useful tool regardless of the Soldier's experience with deployments

"Whether this is the Soldier's first or fourth deployment, I believe we all learned good information," said Ferdon

The nearly 160 Soldiers deploying with 682nd Engineer Battalion began training at Camp Ripley, Minn, last May The unit will depart Minnesota for additional training in October in preparation for a one-year mobilization to Kuwait in support of Operation Spartan Shield

The unit's mission will be to direct and oversee the mission command for vertical and horizontal construction companies and missions within the US Central Command

The Soldiers of the 682nd represent 99 communities, and expect to return home next summer

September 11, 2015
by Sgt Bob Brown
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs



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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.



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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.



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