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Minnesota National Guard
Operation Future Warrior, rain or shine

Operation Future Warrior More than 900 recruits from the Minnesota National Guard came to Camp Ripley Friday through Sunday for Operation Future Warrior.

Young men and women who volunteered to join the Minnesota Army National Guard got to experience a small taste of basic training and military training during the three-day event.

"The intent of Operation Future Warrior is removing the mystery of the training recruits will experience when attending Basic Combat and Advance Individualized Training," said Lt. Col. Eduardo Suarez, recruiting and retention battalion commander.

Beginning on Friday, recruits from all over Minnesota disembarked from the military-style buses to make introductions with their drill sergeants, team leaders and instructors as part of what is called HIRT--or High Intensity Resilience Training. This training included events on the Confidence Course & the Leader's Reaction Course in addition to a 30 minute "shark attack" simulating the intense first interactions recruits will make with drill sergeants at basic training.

"The main drive behind HIRT is to prepare these young warriors for what to expect at basic training. It's so they can have a feel for the stressors and it will not be as much of a shock once they arrive at their training site," said Sgt. 1st Class Amanda Hunt of the St. Cloud Recruiting Team.

With over 900 recruits from the eight Recruit Sustainment Program areas around the state, Camp Ripley's training area became a very busy place. Events like Warrior Challenge tested each team of eight individuals through a physical fitness test, 5.3 mile ruck march, land navigation, and marksmanship on the EST2000 simulator.

"They were motivated and eager," said Master Sgt. Duwayne Schmitz, first sergeant for the Camp Ripley RSP. "Everyone was pumped up, even with the poor weather, and showed a high level of proficiency."

Since the RSP program's inception in the mid-1990s the ideal result has been to create a career orientation opportunity for all recruits and their families to better understand the next steps before, during and after basic training. Operation Future Warrior is the next generation of that same intent and promotes a motivating Army environment generating awareness and education to prepare Minnesota National Guard soldiers to get the most out of their careers.

By the second day, recruits were taking part in Soldier Training Readiness Modules and classes in basic Army tactics. As planned for the third day of the event, recruits were taken through the process of several administrative exercises and an awards ceremony. The usual pass and review event was cancelled due to the poor weather, but the exhausted recruits seemed to be proud of the accomplishments they earned, the great time they had, and the cool stories to tell back home.

May 24, 2017
by Staff Sgt. Anthony Housey
Camp Ripley Public Affairs



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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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