TAG Line January 24, 2020

Southern Strike 2020

More than 80 N.D. Air National Guard members along with cargo recently departed from the Air National Guard Base in Fargo, bound for the Mississippi Air National Guard's Combat Readiness Training Center (CRTC) in Gulfport, Miss. on Jan. 22. These Happy Hooligans are participating in the annual exercise Southern Strike 20 and are part of a total force, multi-service training exercise hosted by the CRTC and Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center near Hattiesburg, Miss. This exercise emphasizes air-to-air, air-to-ground and special operations forces training to prepare for combat. Top photo: A Mississippi Air National Guard C-17 arrives at the Air National Guard Base in Fargo to pick up Airmen and cargo participating in Southern Strike 20.

Members of the 119th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron carry luggage through personnel out-processing as they prepare to depart Fargo en route to Mississippi Air National Guard's Combat Readiness Training Center in Gulfport, Miss. on Jan. 22. They are participating in exercise Southern Strike 20.

Airmen of the 119th Wing load cargo onto a Mississippi Air National Guard C-17 at the Air National Guard Base in Fargo on Jan. 22. in support of exercise Southern Strike 20.

119th Wing members board a C-17 at the Air National Guard Base, in Fargo for exercise Southern Strike 20.

Master Sgt. Samantha Kolness unit deployment manager, goes through a pre-deployment checklist with Hooligans participating in Southern Strike 20.

ND Suicide Prevention Coalition State Meeting 2019

Members of the N.D. National Guard participated in a statewide learning opportunity alongside community leaders and students.

Eight-Plex Construction

Students with the Construction Engineering Supervisor Advance Leaders Course recently had the opportunity to perform framing tasks on a lodging construction project at Camp Grafton Training Center. Part of the leadership tasks are to schedule next steps in the project in accordance with the construction blueprints and to perform quality control inspections. The course, held at the 164th Regional Training Institute, enables the students to be better equipped to train their squads and assist in directing combat engineer construction missions. Various units in the N.D. National Guard will contribute to the construction of the eight-plexe buildings that will house service members during training.

Soldiers training at the 164th Regional Training Institute work on a eight-plex building at Camp Grafton Training Center.

N.D. Guard Recruiting Draws National Attention

Master Sgt. Richard Blumler was awarded the Director's Strength Maintenance Expert 7 of the Year, which is awarded to the top recruiting and retention non-commissioned officer in a supervisory position in each of the recruiting and retention area of commands. Additionally, Blumer was also named as the national recruiting non-commissioned officer in charge of the Year and is the only N.D. Army National Guard soldier to compete and win at the national level. Sgt. 1st Class Erik Wall received the N.D. Army National Guard Director's 54, an award given to the top recruiter in each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and three U.S. Territories.

Left: Master Sgt. Richard Blumler, N.D. Army National Guard Recruiting and Retention Battalion, poses by his retractable banner while attending the Director's Strength Maintenance Annual Conference (DSMAC) in San Antonio, Texas on Jan. 15. Right photo: From left to right Lt. Col. Jodee Aubol, commander, N.D. Army Recruiting and Retention Battalion; Sgt. 1st Class Erik Wall; Blumler; and Command Sgt. Maj. Troy Miller, command sergeant major for N.D. Army Recruiting and Retention Battalion, at the DSMAC.


Camp Grafton's Engagement Skills Trainer 2000 (EST 2000) is being upgraded to support the changes happening within the U.S. Army Marksmanship training program. Soldiers will soon be able to train on shooting tables in preparation for the new qualification standards being implemented next year. The EST 2000 provides training modes for both marksmanship and collective training. In the marksmanship training mode Soldiers learn safety, proper techniques and skills on simulated live fire ranges. The collective training utilizes individual training skills learned in a group scenario. Additionally, Soldiers can use their Advanced Combat Optical Gun sight (ACOG), Close Combat Optics (CCO) and night vision devices on their weapon systems to train as they fight.

Sgt. 1st Class Kristi Hogness, left, and Sgt. 1st Class Rose Schwind assist in the upgrade by testing weapon tables to ensure systems upgrades were successful.

Soldier's results are displayed after testing weapons.

81st Civil Support Team Change of Command

Lt. Col. Pat R. Flanagan assumed command from Lt. Col. Lila L. Teunissen of the 81st Civil Support Team (81st CST) on Jan. 23 in Bismarck. Teunissen has commanded the unit since July 2017 and is scheduled to retire after 29 years of service with the U.S. Army and the North Dakota National Guard. CSTs were created in each state in response to the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 in order to provide adjutants general local support capability. For more information on the change of command click "Civil Support Team to Welcome New Commander".

Photos from the change of command ceremony of the 81st Civil Support Team on Jan. 23.
Created By
ND National Guard Public Affairs Office