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

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.

The symbol of the 34th Infantry Division features a steer skull imposed on the shape of an olla, a Mexican cooking pot. During World War II, German soldiers in Italy referred to the American soldiers who wore the familiar patch as "Red Devils" or "Red Bulls."

Now, the 34th ECAB has assumed the Red Devils name, and it couldn't have come at a better time.

In October, the aviation unit officially transitioned from a "combat aviation brigade" to an "expeditionary combat aviation brigade," as part of the U.S. Army's Aviation Restructuring Initiative (ARI). The ARI, which was intended to rebalance the Army's aviation force structure into a smaller, more capable and sustainable force, was the most significant change to Army aviation in decades.

The ECAB is designed to be modular and tailorable, to complete an array of tasks across a variety of contingencies. ECAB's are organized as required to support offensive, defensive, and stability operations in support of ground maneuver forces or in defense support of civilian authorities.

When task organized with an attack reconnaissance unit, ECABs also provide accurate and timely information collection; provide reaction time and maneuver space; and destroy, defeat, disrupt, or delay enemy forces.

Leaders of the 34th ECAB have worked diligently to ensure the unit's structure, tasks, and training events meet the needs and expectations of the greater Army, and -- despite the evolution in organizational structure -- the unit's commitment to readiness and relevancy endure.

"I'm incredibly proud of this brigade and everything our Soldiers and their families have done to support our state and nation," said Col. Shawn Manke, commander of the 34th ECAB. "As we move into 2018, the Red Devils will continue to accomplish readiness goals and to respond when called upon."

The Minnesota-based subordinate units of the 34th ECAB are the 2-147th Assault Helicopter Battalion, the 834th Aviation Support Battalion, and F Company, 1-189th General Support Aviation Battalion. Additionally, the 34th ECAB has training oversight over B Company and C Company of the 2-211th General Support Aviation Battalion, based in St. Cloud, Minnesota.

Outside Minnesota, the 34th ECAB provides training and operational guidance to the subordinate 1-189th General Support Aviation Battalion, headquartered in Montana, and the 1-183rd Aviation Regiment, headquartered in Idaho.

December 12, 2017
by 1st Lt. Eric Jungels
34th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade Public Affairs






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Month of the Military Child recognizes contributions of military kids

Posted: 2018-04-07  01:54 PM
Minnesota National Guard FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 7, 2018

ST. PAUL, Minn.- The month of April is designated as the Month of the Military Child to recognize the contributions and sacrifices military children make so their family members can serve. An estimated 15,000 children in Minnesota have been affected by the deployment of a parent.

"Military children bear a lot while their family members serve," said Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, Adjutant General of the Minnesota National Guard. "It is up to us to support these resilient kids and help to lessen their burden."

An event to honor military kids in Minnesota will take place April 13, 2018, at the Mall of America rotunda from 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Activities will include appearances by the Teddy Bear Band and meet and greets with Nickelodeon characters.



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Posted: 2018-03-16  08:45 AM
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Minnesota Guardsman Receives Award for Combating Drugs in his Community

Posted: 2018-03-09  03:13 PM
Counterdrug WOODBURY, Minn. - Staff Sgt. Benjamin Kroll, an analyst with the Minnesota National Guard's Counterdrug Task Force who is assigned to work with the Hennepin County Sherriff's Office was recognized for his achievements as the Analyst of the Year during the 2018 Minnesota Association of Crime and Intelligence Analysts Training Symposium in Woodbury, Minnesota, March 7, 2018.

Through a partnership with Minnesota law enforcement agencies throughout the state, the Minnesota National Guard Counterdrug Task Force (MNCDTF) supports the anti-drug initiatives to counter all primary drug threats and vulnerabilities through the effective application of available assets, said Maj. Jon Dotterer, Counterdrug Coordinator for the State of Minnesota. The goal for the program is to support federal, state, tribal, and local agencies in the detection, disruption, interdiction, and curtailment of illicit drugs.

Kroll is one of sixteen service members on the Counterdrug Task Force that provides this force-multiplying service to our communities against illicit drug-use. With the information that law enforcement provide through their patrols and daily operations, Kroll and his colleagues across the state assist by putting together a figurative picture with all of the gathered information which aids in identifying how to move forward with legal action to deter or prevent the sale or use of illegal narcotic drugs.



Women Opened Doors in Minnesota National Guard

Posted: 2018-03-08  09:05 AM
Minnesota National Guard ST. PAUL, Minn. - "The battlefront is no place for women to be," said Command Sgt. Maj. Earl Kurtzweg, 125th Field Artillery, in an article published in 1976. "There are certain jobs girls say they can do, but they just can't do ... the battlefront is no place for women to be. Other countries in the world use women in combat, but the U.S. has not come around to that way of thinking." Kathy Berg, a New Ulm reporter summarized at the time. "So women in the New Ulm unit take care of personnel files and pay records and leave the fighting to the men."

The Minnesota National Guard has "come around to that way of thinking" since those early days of gender integration. In the last 44 years women have made momentous strides toward inclusion and acceptance. Their accomplishments are testimony to their fortitude and the progressive development of the Minnesota National Guard.

When an accomplished female Soldier is credited with breaking barriers she will often pass that honor to the women that preceded her. Brig. Gen. Johanna Clyborne is such a leader. She acknowledges that she is one of the first females in the Minnesota National Guard who has held key leadership roles, however she sees it differently. "I feel responsible for all women in uniform," said Clyborne. "Women before me opened the door, now I've cleared the room. It's up to the women behind me to hold the room."



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