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Minnesota National Guard
Rochester 'military comic' gains national TV exposure

Jan Donahue, the Soldier's wife turned military comic who was featured in the Post-Bulletin in March, will soon be gaining a national audience for her unique brand of comedy

ABC's "World News Tonight" is planning to run a story on the Rochester mother of two who turned to comedy as way of coping with the challenges and loneliness of being a military wife in a time of war The story is tentatively set to run today on its 5:30 pm newscast on Channel 5 and 6, Donahue said

"It's been a wild roller coaster ride, and I'm just hanging on," Donahue said "Each day just amazes me I'm so excited about life and so happy to be helping other military families"

Dean Reynolds, an ABC News national correspondent based in Chicago, and a news crew spent most of Thursday interviewing Donahue and taping segments of her comedy routine at Goonie's Comedy Club in downtown Rochester She also was taped for the ABC story while performing in Detroit Lakes for military families on Saturday

In addition to the piece ABC News is doing, Donahue's story has been reported on by Fox 9 News out of the Twin Cities KARE 11 News is also looking to do her story, Donahue said

She has performed at the Minnesota Comedy Club in St Paul She is also set to do five minutes of material at the Improv in Hollywood when she flies out to the West Coast in late May for personal comedy training by Judy Carter, a national motivational speaker and humorist

Donahue, who travels the state performing for military families, could also be seeing her audience expand nationally in another sense The Family Readiness Group, a support system for families organized by the Army, has sent her name to National Guard units across the country

The main thrust of her comedy is: "Don't forget us" Donahue doesn't use four-letter words in her routine, but her material, centered on the issues of military men and women and their families, can be raw and personal

Donahue started doing her comedy in the midst of what she describes as an emotional crisis

The deployment of her husband, Sgt Kevin Donahue, had just been extended She had lost her job And she was struggling to raise two teenage sons and keep up the mortgage payments on the family house in Windom Having reached an emotional tipping point, Donahue seized on comedy as a kind of life-preserver

Behind her comedy also lurks the reality of war Her husband, Kevin, is stationed in Scania, Iraq, with the 125th Field Artillery Unit About two weeks ago, Donahue was talking to him on the Internet via a web cam Suddenly her husband looked to the side The base was being mortared Her husband wasn't hurt, but the experience left Donahue shaken

By Matthew Stolle, The Post-Bulletin
April 16, 2007
Source: www.postbulletin.com



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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.



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