Mrs. Darlene Erichsen, Radioman 2nd Class Floyd A. Wells' closest relative, clutches the U.S. Flag that draped Wells' casket presented by U.S. Navy Capt. Jim Mehail, right, during the interment ceremony at the N.D. Veterans Cemetery. Darlene and her husband Darrell Erichsen, left, traveled from Arlington, Wash. for the ceremony. More photos at Floyd Wells Interment.
Cultural Day with BSC
On Sept. 25, the N.D. National Guard partnered with Bismarck State College (BSC) to host an international Culture Fest. This second annual event held at the BSC student union, is a celebration of diversity and featured booths demonstrating the culture of different countries.
Recruiting-Retention Achievements Mark Fiscal Year 2019
Our N.D. Air National Guard recruiting and retention team had a very successful Fiscal Year 2019. From a record year accessing 135 new members to our Hooligan Family to closing 2019 at 95.4% end strength. This equates to a 4% increase over the previous year which led to a 92% Airmen retention rate. We congratulate our team members that achieved Century Award status this year. With 100 career enlistments are Tech Sgt. Shelly Fink and Neil Nelson, and Master Sgt. Tina Sly who reached a whopping 300 career enlistments!
The N.D. Army National Guard recruiting and retention team also enjoyed a successful Fiscal Year 2019. Collectively their achievements enabled the N.D. Army Guard end strength to grow by 63 to 2,956, the highest growth since Fiscal Year 2011. Twenty-five of our recruiting and retention non-commissioned officers (92% of the team) met or exceeded assigned missions. For the first time in nearly a decade two teams met their assigned mission of recruits. The Southeast team, based in Fargo and led by MSG Richard Blumler, exceeded their assigned mission by achieving 111.5%. The Northeast recruiting team in Grand Forks, led by MSG Robert Buzick, made their assigned mission two consecutive years by achieving 100.7% success rate this year. This recruiting accomplishment combined with more Soldiers re-enlisting enabled us to enjoy an extremely low attrition rate of 11.8% (exceeding the 12% goal). These outstanding results were possible due to a total commitment at all levels.
Photo: Sgt. 1st Class Jesse Klein, N.D. Army National Guard recruiter, stands at attention along side high school students who recently joined the N.D. Army Guard as a large U.S. Flag is unfurled on the field during Military Appreciation night at the Bismarck Demons vs. Century Patriots soccer match on Sept. 17.
Air Defenders Prep for National Training Center
On Oct. 4, Alpha Battery, 1st Battalion, 188th Air Defense Artillery Regiment conducted a live fire exercise at Camp Ripley, Minn. The unit used blank rounds while firing the M2 and M3P .50 cal machine guns to familiarize themselves with their weaponry in preparation for their mission at the National Training Center (NTC) April 2020. These exercises will help the unit be successful in performing their duties supporting a maneuver force during their NTC rotation.
Attention Guard Soldiers and Airmen. Consider nominating your employer.
The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award is the highest recognition given by the U.S. Government to employers for their support of their employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve. The award was created to publicly recognize employers who provide exceptional support to their Guard and Reserve employees.
Nominations must come from a Guard or Reserve member who is employed by the organization they are nominating, or from a family member. For more information visit freedomaward.mil or call Janette Fetch at (701) 333-2057.