Airman 1st Class Maggie Hebert, of the 219th Security Forces Squadron lowers herself on a rope using an 'Australian Rappel' method, as instructor Staff Sgt. Jon Rambow, of the 817th Engineer Company, shouts directions to her from above at the Camp Gilbert C. Grafton Training Center.
Staff Sgt. Joel Ortiz-Diaz, of the 219th Security Forces Squadron, makes his way through a confidence course Camp Gilbert C. Grafton Training Center, near Devils Lake, N.D.
Tech. Sgt. Joseph Burnell, standing, keeps count of pushups being done by four 219th Security Forces Squadron members as part of a team-building exercise at the Camp Gilbert C. Grafton Training Center, near Devils Lake, N.D., July 16, 2019. Staff Sgt. Shawn Mcelyea can be seen straining to contribute one more pushup.
An EF-1 tornado with wind speeds of up to 105 mph touched down north of Mott at 9:24 p.m. last Friday, cutting a path about 2.8 miles long and stretching up to 200 yards wide, according to National Weather Service estimates. The twister flung debris into homes and peeled off roofing, flipped over campers and leveled the 4-H building at the Hettinger County Fairgrounds, with over 400 exhibits inside for the Hettinger County Fair. Authorities also reported downed power lines and branches, uprooted trees and damaged crops.
Honoring the Fallen
The 10th annual Tribute to Fallen Soldiers Memorial Torch Ride is honoring three North Dakota National Guardsmen and fallen Soldiers as it travels from Oregon to Washington D.C. These tributes are part of a 22-day, 4,000 mile, cross-country ride. Family and friends gathered at the Global War on Terror Memorial in Bismarck, as the torch burned in honor of Sgt. 1st Class Darren Linde and Spc. Tyler Orgaard, who were killed on December 3, 2012 in Afghanistan. The organization will also stop in Fargo at the Elks Lodge to honor North Dakota National Guardsman Spc. Michael Hermanson who was killed on May 23, 2006 in Iraq. Since it’s inception, they have recognized over 800 fallen service members of all branches.
Disaster Response Exercise
Representatives from more than 50 local, state and federal agencies conducted a 3-day disaster response exercise at the North Dakota capital building and the State Emergency Operations Center at Fraine Barracks. The exercise scenario, hosted by the North Dakota Department of Emergency Services (NDDES), was designed to test participants' ability to collaborate with their counterparts in a multi-jurisdictional environment. During the exercise, attendees were tasked with responding to a hazardous chemical spill in the Missouri River. The location of the incident created a scenario where agencies would have to identify potential issues and actions needed to resolve those issues while collaborating across four jurisdictions: Burleigh and Morton Counties and the Cities of Bismarck and Mandan. Additionally, city and county officials and representatives from North Dakota’s State Water Commission, Department of Transportation, Department of Environmental Quality, Department of Health, Department of Human Services, Highway Patrol, Department of Agriculture, Game and Fish, the Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S. Navy, National Weather Service and the North Dakota National Guard.
Some of the areas tested included response planning, operational coordination, environmental response, health and safety, public information and warning, economic recovery, infrastructure systems and natural and cultural resources. Ensuring agency and community interaction and sharing ideas before a disaster happens allows us to more effectively respond as a team improving our preparedness.