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Minnesota National Guard
Guard supports flood relief efforts in southeastern Minn.

As flood waters swept through southeastern Minnesota, National Guard Soldiers were woken up with a 3 am call to mobilize and support flood relief efforts

The Minnesota National Guard's 34th Military Police Company was sent to the area in and around Winona, Minn, the 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery was sent to the area in and around Caledonia and the 34th Combat Aviation Brigade was tasked with the mission of being the eye-in-the-sky to survey the heavily damaged counties and search for stranded citizens

"This is an important mission," said Spc Joel Ehrenberg "This is a good mission This is what I joined the Guard for: to help my community and my state I lot of people say "╦ťthanks' and it we know it's well worth it"

Within a matter of hours of being alerted, the troops deployed to the area to set up traffic control points and immediately began going door-to-door to homes to make sure everyone was ok

In some cases, including that of Bonnie and Roger Oldham, houses were completely knocked off their foundation and carried a distance by raging flood waters In those cases, Minnesota National Guard Soldiers assisted citizens with salvaging what was left by flood waters At the Oldham residence just outside of Winona, Minn, Staff Sgt John Indrehus, Pfc Mike Ramos and Pfc Mark Limberg, 34th Military Police Company even rescued the Oldham's cat, Silvester, who was trapped in the bedroom

While 34th MP Soldiers were maintaining the area around Winona, 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery Soldiers were working with local law enforcement agencies to contain and manage the area around Caledonia The near city of Money Creek, which saw some of the worst and most immediate flooding, was hosting a motorcycle gathering at a park when the flood waters hit The majority of the bikes were destroyed by the floods, and the road leading into the park was all but washed away At Money Creek, the Traffic Control Point set up by Minnesota National Guard Soldiers prevented citizens from re-entering a potentially fatal situation

As the missions on the ground continued, the 34th Combat Aviation Brigade supported through the air, flying UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters to look for targets of life-saving opportunity and to give legislators, including Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty a tour of the damaged area

As flood relief operations continue, Soldiers have proven that they are always ready and always there to support the community and the state They will remain in southeastern Minnesota until they are no longer needed When they get home, they will return to their civilian lives, but will have contributed to the safety and security of their fellow Minnesotans

By Cpl Joe Roos, Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs
Aug 21, 2007

Aug. 19, Flood Fight in Southeast Minnesota photo gallery

8/20/07 Flood Fight 2007
Minnesota National Guard Soldiers with the 34th Military Police Company and 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery deployed to Southeastern Minnesota in late August for flood relief operations. (Run Time 2:53)





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Norwegian youth recognized for response to vehicle accident

Posted: 2017-02-22  09:59 AM
NOREX youth CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Norwegian youths Stian Dahl and Haavard Engen received the Camp Ripley Garrison Commander's coin from Col. Scott St Sauver February 19, 2017, in recognition for reacting to a vehicle accident they witnessed earlier that week.

As part of the U.S.-Norway Reciprocal Troop Exchange, Norwegian youths ages 19-20 are matched up with a host family in order to spend an evening experiencing American culture. In most situations the "Buddy Weekend" as it's called allows the youths to go shopping, attend events and have home-cook meals along with their host family.

"We are able to match up youth members with families all over the state," said Staff Sgt. Tim Krouth, Buddy Weekend organizer. "Lots of the families have hosted one or two of our Norwegian friends for several years in a row now, it a great way to relax and see some of Minnesota."



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Posted: 2017-02-21  01:25 PM
NOREX FTX HALTDALEN, Norway - After two days at a base camp near Haltdalen, Norway, Minnesota National Guardsmen participating in the 44th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange were ready for the most challenging aspect of their four-day field training exercise - a ski march up the mountain.

It was Day three of the FTX, meaning members of the 44th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange had slowly adjusted to surviving and thriving while living in a winter environment and also honed their skills on cross country skills well enough to begin a climb that would take nearly three hours.

"Our goal was to get you to know how to use the winter, see how the Norwegians use the winter, and how we survive the winter so we can conduct combat," said Vidar Aune, one of several members of Home Guard 12 guiding the Minnesota National Guard Soldiers and Airmen during their training here. "By getting the experience living outside in the snow, you manage to survive it and handle it quite well."



Norwegian youth train with Minnesota National Guard

Posted: 2017-02-16  10:52 AM
NOREX Youth CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. -Youth of the Norwegian Home Guard experienced some of Minnesota culture along with focused military style training during the first week of NOREX 2017.

The U.S.--Norway reciprocal Troop Exchange, which began Feb. 9, 2017, annually swaps approximately 100 Soldiers and Airmen from the Minnesota National Guard and a like number of Norwegian Home Guard soldiers as well as youths to experience each other's training, military lifestyle and most importantly, culture.

"It's rewarding interacting with more young people eager to learn about a new lifestyle and culture," said Capt. Brett Farniok, Youth Platoon Officer-in-Charge.



Warmly welcomed, U.S. contingent arrives in Norway for NOREX 44

Posted: 2017-02-12  01:38 PM
NOREX44 CAMP VAERNES, Norway - Following a muster at the 133rd Airlift Wing and an eight-hour overnight flight across the Atlantic Ocean, nearly 100 Soldiers and Airmen with the Minnesota National Guard finally arrived in Norway to conduct the 44th Norwegian Reciprocal Troop Exchange on Feb. 9, 2017.

While the U.S.-based Soldiers were warmly greeted by members of the Norwegian Home Guard at Camp Vaernes, a similarly-sized group of Norwegian Home Guard members were received at Camp Ripley Training Center. The arrival of military members from both countries to their host nations formally began the annual exchange, which provides a unique opportunity for individuals to become fully-immersed in foreign military and social culture.

"Though I didn't know what to expect before getting here, they have been very welcoming," said Air Force Staff Sgt. Taylor Hanson, a member of the 148th Fighter Wing. "They are making sure we had everything."



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