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in aging with grace and dignity. Not to mention plenty of laughter and passion. WELCOME TO HEALTHY AGING At Summit Vista we believe that healthy aging comes from staying active mentally, physically, and emotionally. It’s being truly engaged in life. That is why we have taken great care to create an environment that encourages close social relationships, involvement in meaningful and productive activities, and a variety of opportunities to use and share your valued skills and abilities. Our spacious 105-acre campus features a fully equipped fitness center, an indoor heated pool and spa, programmable machines, weight training, fitness classes, outdoor walking paths, a putting green, and a 62,000-square-foot clubhouse for socializing, family gatherings, and more. Then there’s our ever-expanding list of clubs which are determined solely by our residents, as well as multidenominational spiritual services and other enriching experiences unparalleled in retirement living. Add it all up and you start to get a sense of how we define healthy aging. Of course, another essential component to healthy aging is healthcare services. Summit Vista will offer a full continuum of care—including everything from independent living, assisted living, and home care to nursing care, memory care, and rehabilitation services. Look into Summit Vista today and see why our first two residential buildings at Utah’s first Life Plan Community are filling up quickly.

LEARN MORE ABOUT HEALTHY AGING THE SUMMIT VISTA WAY. Call us at 888-533-3101 or go online today to request a free Information Kit at www.SummitVista.com/healthyaging3 february


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TOOELE ARMY DEPOT. April 24, 2017. Members of the Tooele Army Depot (TEAD) Fire Department along with soldiers from the Utah National Guard (UTNG) 85th Civil Support Team (CST) and Wyoming National Guard (WYNG) 84th CST held an emergency response exercise in a vacant troop area on the depot. The exercise was part of a quarterly program instituted to test the emergency response and mitigation of incidents on TEAD. courtesy of tooele army depot / lally laksbergs


va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y



CONTENTS 85th Civial Support Team


Guardsmen take on Hurricane Harvey

AT THE READY pages 18-19

Tooele Army Depot at 75

A PLACE TO CALL HOME pages 20-29

DEPARTMENTS The Briefing / 4-5 Doing Business: Myers Mortuaries and MyMedic / 6-7 On the Homefront: Legislative Veterans and Military Commission / 8-9 Community Relations: Focus on Dennis McFall / 10-11 Service & Support: Join the Team / 12-13 Family Matters: Stengthening Relationships / 30-33 Then & Now: Who Tells Your Story? / 34-36 Remembering WWI: Flipping a Coin / 37

WWW.UTAHVALOR.COM UTAH MEDIA GROUP / 4770 South 5600 West, West Valley City UT 84118 utahmediagroup.com To subscribe: 801-204-6100 / To advertise: 801-204-6300 PROJECT TEAM / Brent Low, Publisher / Megan Donio, Publications Manager Michelle Bridges, Project Editor / Utah Media Group Creative VALOR: A Salute to Utah’s Veterans and Military is a publication of Utah Media Group and distributed in partnership with Deseret News and The Salt Lake Tribune. Copyright © february 2018. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any format without consent of Utah Media Group. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in this publication and assume no liability for errors, inaccuracies or omissions.

on the cover :

Civil Support Teams from Utah, Hawaii, Guam and Alaska conduct a Relief in Place exercise at Barking Sands Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii. A Utah team member suits up before entering an underground bunker.

courtesy utah national guard / ileen kennedy



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The Briefing U ta h h a s a n e n ga g i n g m i l i ta r y c o m m u n i t y w i t h d e e p r oo t s a n d b ra n ch e s t h a t r e a ch f a r a n d w i d e. O u r m y r i a d o f s to r i e s a r e tol d i n o u r s ch ool s , l i b ra r i e s , m u s e u m s , a c t iv i t i e s a n d h o m e s . E ve r y n o w a n d t h e n VA LO R c o m e s a c r o s s i n te r e s t i n g “ b i t s a n d p i e c e s ” t h a t w e w a n t to s h a r e w i t h o u r r e a d e r s .

VA ANNOUNCES ROLLOUT AND APPLICATION PROCESS FOR VETERANS ID CARD The VA has announced that the application process for the national Veterans Identification Card (VIC) is now available for veterans—yet another action honoring their service. This has been mandated through legislation since 2015 to honor veterans, and this rollout of the ID card fulfills that overdue promise. Only those veterans with honorable service will be able to apply for the ID card, which will provide proof of military service, and may be accepted by retailers in lieu of the standard DD-214 form to obtain promotional discounts and other services where offered to veterans. “The new Veterans Identification Card provides a safer and more convenient and efficient way for most veterans to show proof of service,” said VA secretary Dr. David J. Shulkin. “With the card, veterans with honorable service to our nation will no longer need to carry around their paper DD214s to obtain veteran discounts and other services.” The VIC provides a more portable and secure alternative for those who served the minimum obligated time in service, but did not meet the retirement or medical discharge threshold. Veterans who served in the armed forces, including the reserve components, and who have a discharge of honorable or general (under honorable conditions) can request a VIC. To request a VIC, veterans must visit vets. gov, click on “Sign In” in the top right hand corner and establish an ID.me account. Once the Veteran verifies their identity they may request to “Apply for the Veteran ID Card”. Veterans who apply for a card should receive it within 60 days and can check delivery status of their cards at vets.gov. A digital version of the VIC will be available online soon. —VA FOR VALOR


A pathway to care


he VA Salt Lake City Health Care System is making bold changes when it comes to how it delivers care to veterans. It is shifting from a health care system focused on treating disease to one rooted in healing partnerships that support veterans in achieving their greatest overall wellbeing. The result is a whole health approach, which is a redesign of health care focused The whole health approach focuses on on empowering veterans to empowering veterans to take charge of their own health. getty images / steve debenport take charge of their own health. Guided by a personalized health plan, VA’s Whole Health System considers the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and environmental elements that work together to provide the best quality of life for each veteran. As we reconnect with what matters most in our lives and learn new approaches to help us live life to the fullest, VA health teams will be there each step of the way. VA is launching the full Whole Health System in one Flagship facility in each of the 18 Veterans Integrative Service Networks (VISN). Flagship sites are expanding veteran self-empowerment, self-healing and self-care through the implementation of three components, The Pathway, Well-being Programs and Whole Health Clinical Care. n The Pathway is a partnership with peers where veterans are empowered to explore their mission, aspiration, and purpose, and begin their overarching personal health plan. n Well-being Programs focus on self-care and equip each person with skill building and proactively supports one’s personal health plan with complementary and integrative health (CIH) approaches such as mindfulness, yoga, tai chi, and health coaching. n Whole Health Clinical Care is provided by clinicians who utilize a whole health approach which is grounded in a healing relationship and incorporates complementary and integrative health approaches based on the veteran’s personal health plan. This care may be provided in the VA or in the community.


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03/08 HONORING ALL WOMEN VETERANS Celebrate the service of Utah women veterans. Inspirational words by Utah Air National Guard’s Gen. Christine Burkle. Social and refreshments. 18th Floor, Zions Bank Building, 1 Main Street, Salt Lake City, 6:30 to 9 p.m. Thursday. Free with RSVP. veterans.utah.gov/calendars


ART BEYOND COMBAT: VIETNAM VETERANS SHOWCASED IN TRAVELING EXHIBIT Three artists who served in the Vietnam War bring their individual perspectives about the war and the country itself to the traveling exhibition: “Vietnam Veterans: Art Beyond Combat.” Works included in the exhibit show images of war, images of peace, and images of healing. Their creators served during a time of uncertainty, protest, and devastation, and each artist has a different perspective on returning to their lives and resolving feelings of unrest. The three artists are: n Dan Maynard initially focused on the people and landscapes of the Western United States, he eventually began drawing scenes of the combat he experienced in Vietnam. When drawing those scenes, he can hear, see, and even taste the combat as he remembers it. His works don’t glorify or beautify the fighting, but illustrates it in all of its gritty realism. n Carl Purcell served as an interrogator for the Air Force, including a year in Vietnam. The fatalistic views of the North Vietnamese soldiers perplexed him, so when he returned he chose to focus on moving forward with his art and his life. His paintings of rural barns, sheds, and fences reflect the balance between future promises and forgotten dreams. n John Steele, like many soldiers, documented his time in Vietnam through a camera. But only later in life did he pursue photography as art. Eventually he returned to Vietnam, and during his four visits came to an understanding of the country as well as his own personal feelings about the war. The exhibition’s remaining locations will be at West Jordan Library’s Viridian Event Center, Feb. 28 to April 4 and Daybreak’s Early Light Academy, April 4 to May 8. Learn more about the exhibit at kued.org/events. —Kued FOR VALOR

GETTING STARTED? VBRC HOSTS NETWORKING BREAKFAST SERIES FOR VETERAN ENTREPRENEURS The Veterans Business Resource Center (VBRC) ensures that veteran entrepreneurs and their family members have the best resources available to start or grow a business in Utah. The VBRC works closely with the Utah Veteran-Owned Business Partnership to help serve the 17,000 veteran-owned business and veteran entrepreneurs throughout the state. Join the VBRC and Small Business Development Network for a series of “networking” breakfasts hosted around the state. Participants will learn how to become more successful with their business, discuss related and trending topics, and network with other veteran entrepreneurs. For more information about topics, locations, dates and host companies, visit utahveternsbrc.org. —VbRC FOR VALOR

TRANSPORTATION COMMISSION OKS LOAN FOR MILITARY HOTEL PROJECT’S ROADS The Utah State Transportation Commission approved a $10 million loan to build roads for a hotel associated with Hill Air Force Base to be built near a large Park City ski resort. The commission approved the loan to the Military Installation Development Authority. The Utah Legislature authorized the funding in 2017 as part of a broad transportation finance measure, but it was up to the transportation commission to grant final approval. The hotel is a project of the authority, Extell Development Co. and HAFB. The hotel will be open to non-military guests but a set number of discounted rooms will be available for military personnel. —hiLLtOp timeS february


Bring your favorite veteran for a wonderful night of music, entertainment, dancing and refreshments. Hosted by Miss Orem and UVU Veterans Services. Uniform/suits and formal wear. Orem Senior Friendship Center, 93 N. 400 East, Orem, 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday. Free. facebook.com/events/161369837796292

03/29 VIETNAM WAR COMMEMORATION DAY Paying tribute to all Utah veterans who served overseas and stateside during the Vietnam War, 1955-1975. Rotunda at State Capitol, 350 N. State Street, Salt Lake City, 2 p.m. Thursday. veterans.utah.gov/calendars

05/11 VETERANS OWNED BUSINESS CONFERENCE Connecting veteran entrepreneurs with business resources. Keynote by Mark Eaton. Larry H. Miller Campus, Salt Lake Community College, 9750 S. 300 West, Sandy, at 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday. Register at slchamber.com/vetbiz

05/19 ‘THE DEVIL’S BRIGADE’ SCREENING Filmed in the Salt Lake Valley, the 1968 military classic about making a special forces unit from elite Canadian Army troops and U.S. Army misfits. Fort Douglas Post Theater, 245 Fort Douglas Blvd., Salt Lake City, 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday. fortdouglas.org/events

05/08 3RD ANNUAL MAYOR’S VETERANS MEMORIAL GOLF TOURNAMENT Fundraiser for building of the Veterans Memorial Hall. Stonebridge Golf Course, 4415 Links Drive, West Valley City, Tee time 8 a.m. Tuesday. RSVP the mayor at ron.bigelow@wvc-ut.gov FOLLOW US at facebook.com/ utahvalormag or online at utahvalor.com va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


Doing Business T h e B e e h ive S ta te h a s a d y n a m i c a n d d ive r s e e c o n o m y. D e f e n s e - r el a te d i n d u s t r i e s a r e pa r t o f t h a t e n v i r o n m e n t . Fr o m b u s i n e s s boa r d r oo m s , go ve r n m e n t o f f i c e s , e d u c a t i o n a l c l a s s r oo m s a n d i n d iv i d u a l l ivel y h ood s , VA LO R i n t r od u c e s r e a d e r s to t h e m a n y pa r t n e r s a n d r e s o u r c e s f i n d i n g s u c c e s s i n t h e m a rk e t pl a c e.




a v e t - fr i e n d ly b u s i n e ss i n p u rs u i t of e xc e ll e n c e

deeply instilled respect for veterans has been part of the Myers Mortuaries ideals ever since the Ogden-based mortuary began service in 1941, when Elmer Myers and his partner, Orson Foulger, purchased Deseret Mortuaries. After graduation from the California School of Mortuary Science and serving in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, Richard Myers joined Deseret Mortuaries and in 1960 the Myers family expanded to several locations in northern Utah. Ever since, Myers has integrated their support for veterans by offering discounts for veteran memorial services. “Myers has always been supportive of our military and our desire to show veterans we appreciate their service, which all began with Richard’s service in the military,” said Tracy Maccarthy, Myers Mortuaries community outreach coordinator. Myers Mortuaries offers a veteran’s service package for a traditional military funeral service, a military medallion on the headstone, an upgraded flag case, and a military inset in the casket at an extremely discounted rate to veterans and military servicemen. “Our veteran’s families tell us our program is a great help to them and appreciate the added personal touch,” Maccarthy said.

Myers Mortuaries has always been supportive of the military and their familes. Through their programs, they hope “the community will develop a similar respect for veterans.” Myers Mortuaries is actively involved with the Vietnam Veterans of America and is a large contributor to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall replica being built at the Layton Commons. courtesy of myers mortuaries

& C R E M AT I O N S E R V I C E S

Myers Mortuaries offers extensive after-care counseling, helping veteran’s families navigate their way through the often confusing paperwork and life insurance for veterans. “We help them get through the first few months after someone passes, which is an integral part of our funeral home’s offerings,” Maccarthy said. “We want all veterans to understand we will be there for them and their families during the greatest hour of need.”

Ogden, Brigham City, Layton, Roy myers-mortuary.com

The Myers’ family is passionate about making a difference in people’s lives. “The initiatives we have in place will help the community develop a similar respect for veterans,” says Myers Mortuaries Marketing Director Vickie Hansen. “When you see those veterans stand at attention and see how much passion they have for our country and other veterans, it really touches your heart.” Dana Rimington has more than 12 years covering stories involving education, military, government and business in northern Utah. She focuses her efforts as a marketing content writer for businesses across the country.


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VETERANS BURIAL BENEFITS Burial benefits available include a gravesite in any of 135 national cemeteries with available space, opening and closing of the grave, perpetual care, a government headstone or marker and a burial flag. The veteran’s family should make arrangements with a funeral provider or cremation office. However, veterans benefits are not paid automatically. It is your responsibility to contact the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at 800-827-1000 for more information. —www.cem.va.gov/burial_benefits february


MyMedic first aid kits are built to help you stay alive with products such as tourniquets, decompression needles, gauze, and bug bite juice, just a few of the items found in MyMedic kits not found in traditional first aid kits. courtesy of my medic


‘WE MAKE THE BEST FIRST AID KITS ON THE PLANET’ by Dana Rimington a v e t - ow n e d co m pa n y w h e r e e v e ry day i s day


hen the Udy family received a jury award after their father was killed from being struck by a semi-truck, they decided to use the money to start a business to help save lives. MyMedic was created, a company based out of North Salt Lake that creates customized first aid kits going beyond traditional first aid supplies of bandages and ointment. Sarah Welch’s father was hit in a rural part of New Mexico, so an ambulance took 45 minutes to arrive. A passing motorist stopped to help her father, but he didn’t have the knowledge or tools to help. Welch’s father passed away shortly after the ambulance arrived. Started by veterans and current military servicemen, MyMedic’s mission is founded upon the principals of serving others so other families don’t experience the same loss. “As a family and veteran-owned company, our goal is to enrich and bless the lives of our customers and community. My husband, two brothers, brother-in-law, and both of my grandfathers served or are currently serving our country, so we have a lot of love and respect for our military men and women,” said Sarah. Sarah’s








for all

MyMedic, Ryan Welch spent 10 years in the Army. Serving others through the company was a natural progression to his career after military service. “If I’m not helping fight for my country, then I want to help my country through a business that helps strengthen families and builds our community,” said Ryan. MyMedic gives away countless kits to combat medics and offers discounts to veterans and first responders. During the Las Vegas shooting last October, several responding officers used MyMedic kits, helping countless lives during the tragedy. “As a civilian, it’s hard to really know how to show appreciation for them. Giving back is the best way we can show them,” said Sarah Welch. “Donating our sales to veteran charities during national holidays, giving all veterans large discounts, and hiring veterans when possible is how I can say thank you. I want all veterans to know that they are valuable, their skills and minds are unique, and as our company grows, so will our ability to show them our gratitude in meaningful ways,” said Sarah. Dana Rimington has more than 12 years covering stories involving education, military, government and business in northern Utah. She focuses her efforts as a marketing content writer for businesses across the country.

TIPS ON HOW TO BUILD A COMPANY TO SAVE LIVES n MyMedic First Aid Kits are simple and easy-to-use, from cuts and scrapes to life threatening injuries. Every kit is backed with a lifetime guarantee and unlimited customer service. n All of the Udy family members are involved with the company from product development, sales, trade shows, customer service, to kit packing. n MyMedic regularly donates to Veterans Charity Ride, a non-profit organization that uses motorcycle therapy to provide healing experiences for wounded, severely injured and amputee veterans from all branches of service.

120 N. Redwood Road, North Salt Lake, UT 84054 866-FIRST-AID (377-8243), mymedic.us

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On the Homefront

STANDING ON COMMON GROUND C O M M I S S I O N B R I N G S A L L P L AY E R S TO T H E TA B L E A N D G I V E S T H E M A VO I C E by Apollo Burgamy for valor m aga z i n e


he Utah Veterans and Military Affairs Commission was formed to study and make recommendations to the Utah Legislature on matters that impact activeduty service members, veterans and their dependents. The commission addresses issues such as reintegration from military to civilian life, employment, finances, education and health. “The Veterans and Military Affairs Commission was created to continue the work on veteran issues identified by the Legislature’s two-year Veterans Reintegration Task Force, which ended in 2013, and to integrate military affairs as part of the commission’s permanent assignment,” said Art. L. Hunsaker, policy analyst for the commission. According to Gary Harter, executive director of Utah Department of Veterans and Military Affairs (UDVMA), “former Representative Tim Cosgrove was a driving force behind the creation of the Veterans Reintegration Task Force.” Cosgrove and other officials recognized that there were significant challenges to those returning from numerous deployments and that there was a need to focus the efforts across several different functions. Cosgrove worked with Harter’s predecessor, Terry Schow, and various legislative stakeholders to start the task force. Both Schow and Cosgrove are still members of the commission today. According to Harter, one of the early issues that the Veterans Reintegration Task Force and the commission addressed were those related to education and training. There was a recognized challenge with veterans gaining equivalent education credit for their military training and experiences. The commission worked with veterans and representatives from the Utah System of Higher Education (USHE) to better understand the issue and define how that would work through


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a recognized process. The process included both a review of their records that was done by policy and a statute change that defined procedures to follow for advisory and counseling services. Once the commission and USHE defined the process, USHE made sure that all of their institutions were aware of it. Then, each institution’s Student Veteran Support Center were also made aware of the process and given the financial support they needed to implement that process, as the centers provide centralized services on campus and interact with hundreds of veterans annually.

COMMISSION MEMBERSHIP AND COLLABORATION The Utah Veterans and Military Affairs Commission, as enacted in Utah Code 36-28-102, is composed of representatives from both the Utah House of Representatives and Senate, executive director of UDVMA, chair of the Utah Veterans Advisory Council, Department of Workforce Services, Department of Health, Department of Human Services, Utah National Guard, Administrative Office of the Courts, Guard and Reserve Transition Advisor, Board of Regents, Utah Defense Alliance, and three representatives from veteran service organizations—currently The American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, and Veterans of Foreign Wars. “I think one of the strengths of the commission is that veterans groups are specifically listed as members of the commission,” said Harter. “They have the ability to reach back to their memberships and bring to light specific issues that the commission should explore.” “One of the purposes for building the participation of these groups into the commission’s structure was to assure that february


“The commission is well managed. It gives opportunites for people to voice problems and raise concerns. They don’t get lip service, they get action.” —BART DAVIS, UTAH TRANSITION ASSISTANCE AND COMMISSION MEMBER getty image / fotovoyager

this collaboration would take place. Other veterans groups are welcome to approach the commission with concerns,” said Hunsaker. With more than 170,000 Utah veterans and more than 22,000 service members, successfully addressing issues such as reintegration takes a concerted collaboration between government, nonprofit and private organizations. The UDVMA works “hand-in-hand with the Commission to better understand issues and, where needed, discuss solutions,” said Harter. “We’ve tackled some tough issues through the years and continue to look forward to what needs to be done.” Hunsaker said, “as with each member of the commission, the executive director’s participation in commission discussions plays an important part in the development of the commission’s recommendations to the Legislature.”

A NEW DEFINITION FOR VETERAN Prior to 2016, members of the Utah Veterans and Military Affairs Commission were concerned that the only definition being used to designate veterans was the federal definition contained in Title 38 Veterans’ Benefits of the U.S. Code. To be considered a veteran an individual must have served in the active military, naval, or air service, and was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable. “Many of our reservists and guardsmen meet that definition due to their recent deployments over the past 15 years, but there is also a large group … who, while they served faithfully, did not meet that definition,” said Harter. The Utah Veterans and Military Affairs Commission february


recommended changes to the definition of veteran to address the excluded groups of reservists and guardsmen. HB36 Veterans Definition was presented during the 2015 Utah general session to include a broader definition. “Veteran” as defined in the Utah Code 68-3-12.5 means an individual who has served in the United States Armed Forces for at least 180 days on active duty or in a reserve component, to include the National Guard; or has incurred an actual servicerelated injury or disability while in the United States Armed Forces regardless of whether the individual completed 180 days; and was separated or retired under conditions characterized as honorable or general. “It is also stated that this definition does not in and of itself convey benefits but just that those who meet it, in our state, can proudly say that they are a veteran who selflessly served others, prepared to go into harm’s way and pay the ultimate sacrifice,” Harter continued. “We decided as a commission that they too should be honored, since they were ready to go, but never required.” The commission meets in the Legislative Building on Capitol Hill on the fourth Tuesday of the month, April through December. When the Legislation is in session, the group concentrates on shepherding veterans and military interests on the hill. Meetings are open to the public. For information, contact committee offices at 801-538-1032, le.utah.gov Apollo Burgamy is a U.S. Navy veteran that served as a Public Affairs Officer recently with the Navy Office of Community Outreach and previously in South Korea overseeing the U.S. Forces Korea Navy Component’s Good Neighbor Program. He served two OIF/OEF deployments and worked with NGOs in support of counter-piracy operations and humanitarian assistance missions. He now works as the Volunteer & Alumni Coordinator for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Utah. va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


Community Relations M a n y s e r v i c e m e n a n d w o m e n o n t h e f r o n t l i n e m a k e s a c r f i c e s to d e f e n d o u r h o m e s a n d c o m m u n i t i e s . I t i s i m po r ta n t f o r t h e m to k n o w t h a t o n t h e h o m e f r o n t w e a r e “a l l i n t h i s to ge t h e r. ” VA LO R s h i n e s t h e s po t l i g h t o n t h o s e w h o w o rk t i r el e s s l y to s h o w o u r s u p po r t a n d ap p r e c i a t i o n .

‘DOING SOMETHING OF VALUE’ DENNIS MCFALL: DEVOTED TO UTAH VETERANS by Sarah Ryther Francom for valor m aga z i n e


ike many retirees, Dennis McFall was looking forward to long days of fishing, hunting and golfing when he said goodbye to his accounting and healthcare management career. But little did he know that his plan would take a turn when the State Department of Health director asked him to oversee the construction and operation of Utah’s first veterans skilled nursing facility. “The opportunity of being in a position to do something of value for our elderly and disabled veterans sounded interesting and attractive, and my service in the Utah Army National Guard had been an enjoyable and educational portion of my life,” McFall says. “I agreed to come aboard, and soon found myself immersed in federal grant activity, space design analysis, and architectural dealings.”

Under McFall’s leadership, Utah opened its first veterans skilled nursing facility in 1998. With the facility operating smoothly, McFall decided to re-retire in August 1999. But less than three years later, McFall received a phone call that would lure him back. Gen. Stanley Gordon, Utah National Guard, asked McFall to again oversee the Salt Lake Veterans Home for a year while its top officer was deployed. “I immediately said yes, I would be happy to do so.” But he didn’t just oversee the home. For the next several years, McFall devoted his life to opening new veterans’ skilled nursing facilities. It all started with a simple question. When visiting with Terry Schow, director of the Division (now Department) of Veterans Affairs, McFall recalls asking, “With the number of veterans in our state, and the need for skilled

William E. Christoffersen Salt Lake Veterans Home

George E. Wahlen Ogden Veterans Home

Mervyn S. Bennion Central Utah Veterans Home

Southern Utah Veterans Home

State Officer: Berni Davis 700 S. Foothill Drive Salt Lake City, UT, 84113-1104 Phone: 801-584-1900 Fax: 801-584-1960

State Officer: Alana Sparkman 1102 North 1200 West Ogden, UT 84404 Phone: ( 801 ) 334-4300 Fax ( 801 ) 334-4309

State Officer: Jeff Hanson 1551 North Main Street Payson, UT 84651 Phone: 801-465-5400 Fax: 801-465-4872

State Officer: Tony Moore 160 N. 200 E Street Ivins, UT 84738 Phone: 435-634-5220 Fax: 435-673-5839

n DISCOVER MORE about Utah’s four Veterans Homes strategically located throughout the state at veterans.utah.gov/veterans-homes


va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y



nursing services for those who served in World War II, Korea and Vietnam continuing to escalate, why has there not been any additional construction of veterans’ homes? [Schow’s] reply was simple, and somewhat surprising. No one either knew how to complete the lengthy and complex grant application, or was not willing to invest the time to get it done. He said he suspected it was the first. My response was simple—I will do that while I am here if I can obtain approval from General Gordon.” Gen. Gordon did not hesitate when McFall approached him about taking over the process. “He said if I can do grant applications while still maintaining the integrity of the state officer job responsibilities, then ‘make it happen.’ I completed and filed grant applications for three Utah locations.” McFall went to work, navigating the complex process of getting grants and raising funds, acquiring land, and overseeing construction. His relentless dedication, leadership and oversight has since led to the opening of three additional veterans’ skilled nursing facilities across the state of Utah. “The facilities came in on time and within budget. They filled quickly. We maintain an occupancy of 98 percent in all four veterans homes and have a wait list in excess of 600 veterans,” says McFall. In 2007, in the midst of opening the veterans’ homes, McFall was named deputy director of the Utah Department of Veterans and Military Affairs, a position he loves. “I have the distinct honor to serve and associate with some of the finest people I have ever known. I have gained many friendships, experienced the joy of knowing and sharing their stories, their life, and the sadness of losing them as their time came to leave us,” he says. “A great many were World War II veterans, a large number served in Korea and Vietnam, and more and more are coming home from Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places that I used to associate with movies coming out of Hollywood. Their stories, and what they experienced in times of battle, make my military service pale by comparison.” Today, McFall remains dedicated to serving Utah’s veterans. One of his most recent accomplishments has been enhancing the state’s veterans cemetery. “A few years ago, I completed an application for a federal grant to expand the cemetery capabilities and construct columbaria for those who chose cremation. We received $4.5 million in grant funds and have completed a major renovation and design modification to the cemetery,” he says. “We increased capacity and constructed new office and maintenance buildings. The entire purpose here was to enable us to continue to provide dignified and respectful services to veterans and provide a final resting place that is beautiful and well maintained. Though he never anticipated accepting the demanding role of deputy director of the Department of Veterans and february


Dennis McFall, deputy director of the Utah Department of Veterans and Military Affairs, has oversight of the state’s veterans homes and veterans cemetery. courtesy of mcfall family

Military Affairs, McFall can’t imagine doing anything else. “As we continue to lose our World War II and Korea veterans at an accelerated pace, we have an increasing number of younger veterans who have served, and are still serving, at various locations across the world. They face danger every day. We owe them our respect, our appreciation for their service, and we continue to have a responsibility to see to it that they receive the benefits that have been promised to them as part of their pay package. This is why I continue to serve veterans and I will always consider it an honor to do so,” he says. In 2014, McFall received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in Outstanding Public Service, but says he has gained much more than he’s given. “Why am I working with veterans? In short, because I can make a contribution to their well-being. I also enjoy what I do, and can say, honestly, that in my entire career I have never felt the satisfaction of accomplishment, for such a great purpose, that I have experienced these last 16 years.” Sarah Ryther Francom is a freelance writer and editor who has more than 10 years of experience covering Utah’s business community. She served as the managing editor of Utah Business magazine from 2008 to 2014, and now contributes to several magazines and publications. She is also writing a book about the history of Utah companies Flying J and Maverik. va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


Service & Support

JOIN THE TEAM ‘W H AT E V E R YO U R CA PA B L I T Y, W E CA N F I N D A P L AC E F O R YO U’ by David Cordero for valor m aga z i n e


ason Comstock served in the U.S. Air Force and the Army National Guard, including one tour in Iraq. Upon leaving the military he felt a void. The teamwork and sense of camaraderie he experienced in the service had diminished in civilian life. “I was a veteran looking for something. There are a lot of great groups out there, but I wasn’t finding the right fit for me,” Comstock recalls. “Then I read about a group that was meeting at a park right by my house. Through them, some great friendships were created—probably as strong as the friendships I made in the military.” That was the beginning of Comstock’s involvement with Team Red White and Blue, one of several newer veterans service organizations that exist to help veterans reintegrate into civilian society by facilitating social and physical interactions as well as providing service opportunities. Team Red White and Blue, along with fellow VSOs Team Rubicon and The Mission Continues combine efforts in “Run as One” events throughout the country April 7. At press time, the Salt Lake City site had yet to be determined for the 5-kilometer race. “Run as One is a unique event created to honor Marine Corps veteran Clay Hunt, an original member of The Mission Continues, Team Rubicon and Team RWB, who took his own life after a battle with PTSD and depression,” explains Jen Parravani, Brand and Communications Specialist for The Mission Continues. “This run serves as a celebration of his life and to unite veterans and civilians with a common purpose in our local communities.”



physical and social activity.” The physical activities are accomplished through chapters at local levels and include boxing exercises, CrossFit workouts, Wednesday night walks in the park and yoga. In the social realm, team members serve the community by playing bingo at the Salt Lake Veterans Home, helping build homes with Habitat for Humanity and manning an aid station during the Salt Lake City Marathon. Veterans and non-veterans of all ages are invited. Local chapters seek to add registered members to get better funded by national Team RWB, but no one is charged a membership fee. In Utah there are approximately 700 members of Team RWB, with about 450 residing in the Salt Lake area. Chapters are also forming in Ogden and St. George. “There are a lot of great people in this community who want to figure out how to support our veterans,” says Comstock, chapter captain for Team RWB Salt Lake City. “Veterans want somebody to stand with them when they are doing something that is hard.” The Salt Lake City Marathon fits that description. A group of approximately 40 Team RWB members took turns carrying the American flag during the most recent race. Vietnam War veteran Stan Taylor, a recipient of two lung transplants, was among those participating. “Having been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress and having been through therapy, Team Red White and Blue has helped me a lot,” Comstock says. “It would be easy to hide from the world. Here, if I don’t show up people call me, ask me what is going on. People notice when you are not around.”




Team RWB’s motto is to “enrich the lives of America’s veterans by connecting them to their community through

Marina Torres, a former military wife who is the Communications Director for the Utah Chapter of Team

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(ABOVE) Nearly 40 members of the local chapter of Team Red White Blue participated in the Salt Lake Marathon. They race as a team to remember fellow veterans by carrying the American flag for the entire course. courtesy salt lake marathon / lucid images

(AT RIGHT) Team Rubicon emergency response teams serve where needed, both locally and aboard. The northern Utah chapter have worked the 2017 winter floods in Box Elder County and helped to clear brush along the Jordan River with the Unified Fire Department. courtesy team rubicon utah / reynolds and cross

Rubicon, is a nurse by trade. Therefore, it made complete sense for her to be using a chainsaw in Rockport, Texas, as part of a contingent of Rubicon volunteers to help in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Wait. What? “Team Rubicon helps me step out of my comfort zone in a very safe environment,” says Torres. “We have trainings once or twice a month on a variety of things including how to operate a chainsaw. When we were deployed to help clean up after Harvey, I was part of the chainsaw team—and I returned with all four limbs.” Team Rubicon emerged out of the desire to help following the devastating Haiti earthquake in January 2010 that resulted in more than 100,000 deaths. Troubled by the scenes in Portau-Prince, Marines Jake Wood and William McNulty decided to act, according to teamrubiconusa.org. Gathering supplies and volunteers, a small group of veterans, first responders and medical professionals deployed to Haiti. Taking its name from a river crossed famously by Julius Caesar more than 2,000 years ago, Team Rubicon combines the abilities of military veterans and first responders and forms emergency first response teams. Rubicon seeks to help the elderly, disabled and veterans with kids, who may not have the means to clean up following a natural disaster. “About 70 percent of our volunteers are veterans, ranging from the most recent conflicts in the Middle East to Vietnam veterans,” says Torres, who noted the Utah chapter’s first february


emergency response came following the flooding in Box Elder County in February 2017. “Whatever your capability, we can find a place for you.” Team Rubicon’s service is not limited to disasters. On local levels, the organization helps with preventative maintenance such as clearing brush around the Jordan River or the mountain benches along side the Unified Fire Department.


Like Team RWB and Team Rubicon, The Mission Continues is an organization built on action. Founded in 2007, TMC deploys veterans on missions within their communities— typically non-emergency situations—so that their response will inspire future generations to serve. Throughout the country, veterans volunteer alongside non-profit partners and community leaders to chip away at issues including: improving community education resources, eliminating food deserts and mentoring at-risk youth. The Mission Continues does not have a service platoon in Utah. To join an existing platoon, go to missioncontinues.org/ service-platoons. David Cordero has been a professional writer for more than 15 years. He has won awards on a variety of subjects, including sports, education and military matters. Among his volunteer endeavors are serving as a board member for Utah Honor Flight and editing American Legion Post 90 newsletter. va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


EMERY COUNTY, Utah. May 2017. Members of the 85th CST and 2-211th Aviation teams “work the ropes” in a simulated rescue attempt on the Green River deep in the canyons of eastern Utah. courtesy utah national guard / ileen kennedy


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READY FOR PRIME TIME 8 5 T H C I V I L S U P P O RT T E A M S’ S P EC I A L I S T RO L E I S A GA M E-C H A N G E R by Hank McIntire for valor m aga z i n e


he scene is a familiar one on the silver screen: A villain has a weapon or substance that threatens the safety of a town, a nation or the entire human race. Or it’s the hero who deals with hazardous materials in order to make a scientific breakthrough. Or an alien presence on Earth sparks fear or wreaks havoc. Whether it’s Lex Luthor in Superman, Doctor Emmett Brown in Back to the Future or Colonel Weber in Arrival, the one common thread is this: Innocent citizens are at risk, and the authorities must do what they can to identify and respond to the threat.

ANSWERING THE CALL In real life, doing “what they can” often involves a call from first responders to an experienced team when the threat is an unknown substance. According to Lt. Col. Chris Caldwell, commander of the Utah National Guard’s 85th Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Civil Support Team (CST), “unknown substance” are the key words that trigger such a call to his mobile phone. Local jurisdictions might respond to an incident and find that they need some extra help to identify a substance they have encountered. One way to look at the role of the 85th is that the civilian first-responder agencies are the starting players, and the coach puts the 85th into the game when the team needs to run a specific play. “The 85th is the first player off the bench when the action on the floor or field requires our special skills,” said Caldwell. Using a basketball or football analogy, the unit is the incident commander’s sixth or twelfth man. The 85th CST, as it is typically known in Utah military february


and first-responder circles, is a full-time, 22-member team overseen and funded by National Guard Bureau. There are 57 CSTs nationwide, which include one in each U.S. state and territory (Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia), plus California, Florida and New York have two teams each. The 85th, created in 2003, is part of Sector V, which includes Utah, Wyoming, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, California, Hawaii and Guam. Initially, the focus of the 85th was primarily on weapons of mass destruction—which could include toxins; biohazards like ricin, anthrax, botulism and smallpox; mustard or VX gas; beta and gamma radiation; or a so-called “dirty bomb.” But over the years the 85th has also added hazmat capability to its arsenal. “We try to train as much as we can within our response sector, which means yearly exercises with Hawaii and Guam, where we go there or they come here,” said Caldwell. “Exercises are one aspect of what we do, but actual response is why our unit was created.” When the call comes—and it does regularly from the likes of fire and police departments and local offices of the FBI and DEA—members of the 85th have to be as ready as the Minutemen were during the Revolution. “When I get called to a scene, the 85th is often already there,” said Brett Handy, WMD coordinator for the FBI’s Salt Lake Division. “I’ve seen their response time improve greatly over the years,” added David Lee, a hazmat captain with Greater Salt Lake’s Unified Fire Authority, who has worked with the 85th for more than a decade. va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


EMERY COUNTY, Utah. May 2017. Operation Pirate was a training exercise to practice the containment of a simulated oil or chemical spill from a bridge spanning the Green River. Members of the 85th CST and 2-211th Aviation teams were on hand to work with federal, state, county and civilian agencies to understand each other’s role in case of such an emergency. courtesy utah national guard / ileen kennedy

Each of these modern-day Minutemen and women—18 soldiers and 4 airmen—is required to live within a 45-minute drive of the North Salt Lake Readiness Center so that the unit can respond within 90 minutes along the Wasatch Front.


“I joined the military for this lab,” Gailey told the Provo Daily Herald.

What does it take to be a part of the 85th CST? In order for a Utah Guard member to join, according to its website they must have a minimum of 10 years of military experience and complete 800 hours of training provided by agencies such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Energy, Department of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Early on in its life cycle, the 85th was more involved than it currently is in assisting local civilian agencies to respond to drug houses and meth labs. First responders now have more in-house capabilities for that mission, but the 85th will still provide assistance when needed, as in a recent incident when the Provo Fire Department needed help to identify some chemicals in a mobile-home trailer, said Caldwell.

“Essentially, their first year is packed full of very technical training,” said Caldwell, a 28-year military veteran who joined the unit last June and is partway through a 300-hour course to become a hazmat technician himself. “And there is regular refresher training for them to stay current on new developments, emerging threats and chemical and biological agents.”

But that doesn’t mean that the 85th doesn’t still have the backs of local responders when they deal with opioids, especially fentanyl. A drug that is highly addictive and creates dependence, fentanyl is 10,000 times more powerful than a dose of morphine and can go into the bloodstream upon skin contact. It can also be a precursor to producing synthetic opioids.

Unit members have specific responsibilities to include command, communication, and medical, but one might say that the 85th is built around its scientist and longest-serving member, Lt. Col. Jared Gailey. He was recruited more than 15 years ago as a civilian as he was completing his Ph.D. in microbiology at Iowa State University. Gailey draws on his expertise not only on scene, but he is building a reference library all CSTs nationwide can draw upon, said Caldwell. One of the perks of Gailey’s job with the 85th is that he gets to use a “rolling laboratory”—how the FBI’s Handy 16

describes it—one of the many vehicles in the CST fleet, which allows real-time testing of substances on scene, with results often within two hours.

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“We do occasionally go to places where they are making drugs,” explained Caldwell, “but we are not in the meth-lab business.”

BELIEVING IN THE MISSION When the 85th CST rolls up on a scene, they do so with an impressive fleet of vehicles, which looks quite like what you might see in the movies: a line of dark-blue trucks and trailers that arrive in a convoy. Besides Gailey’s mobile lab, the trucks and trailers include a command vehicle with its own impressive february


KAUAI, Hawaii. Aug. 30, 2017. Civil Support Teams from Utah, Hawaii, Guam and Alaska conduct a Relief in Place exercise at Barking Sands Pacific Missile Range Facility. A Utah team member (left) checks the data in preparing to identify chemicals during the exercise. Members of 85th CST (right) descend into an underground bunker. courtesy utah national guard / ileen kennedy

communications capability, as well as a mobile command suite that includes satellite-ready technology for different agencies to link together through patch communications—also called cross-banding—even if they are using systems that would otherwise be incompatible with each other. And each vehicle must be airworthy, meaning that it can be quickly loaded onto an Air Force C-17 Globemaster III cargo plane, which the 85th has done a number of times, taking its vehicles to the Gulf Coast for hurricane response and to the islands of the Pacific for training with its counterpart teams. According to Caldwell, the 85th has three types of missions: response, assist, and standby. Response is what it implies, where it provides testing and advice on intervention and mitigation. Assist missions include refresher training for local jurisdictions on sampling techniques and hazmat identification. Standby missions take the 85th to event locations such as the Boston Marathon and NASCAR’s Talladega Superspeedway to monitor air, evaluate potential threats and provide roving patrols. The 85th doesn’t deploy to a combat zone as other Utah Guard units do; instead, it takes its turn in Gold and Silver readiness cycles. Gold takes it to the top of the list to respond to a regional or national emergency, and Silver is when it remains on backup if needed, such as during the 2017 hurricanes in Texas and Florida, said Caldwell. Much of the in-state mission of the 85th involves building relationships with civilian first responders so that when the calls come, its leaders and members already know who they will be working with. february


“At least two or three times a month we are meeting with local planning committees to educate them on our capabilities,” said Caldwell. In his hazmat role with Unified Fire, Lee sees the value of these “CST 101s”—as he calls them—and he encourages other departments to partner with the 85th. “My goal is always to spread the word about CSTs,” he said. “I appreciate their capabilities. Interagency relationships are vital when it comes to hazmat response. We like having them at our side; they are a force-multiplier.” “We couldn’t do what we need to do without them,” said Handy. “We’re not constantly responding, but they are. They can do things on scene, and they’re pretty darn accurate. It’s comforting to have that kind of resource.” Caldwell is one of the newer members of the 85th, and he is impressed with what he has seen. The unit has a mandate to take part in 12 exercises a year, but it goes far beyond that. Even if his CSTers won’t be on the big screen to back up Col. Brown in the Arrival sequel, Caldwell feels they are always ready for prime time. “To see these airmen and soldiers interact with first responders, it makes me feel very proud,” he said. “They are true professionals, always out there in the public eye. They believe in the mission, and they love the job they do.” Hank McIntire served 26 years from 1988 to 2014 with the Utah Army National Guard and U.S. Army in both military intelligence and public affairs. He is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Communication at Utah Valley University. va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y




ith less than 24-hours between notification, activation and wheels up, two experienced aircrews comprised of eight soldiers from G Co., (Medevac) 2nd Battalion, 211th General Support Aviation Battalion (GSAB) loaded up two UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters with medical equipment, supplies and deployed to the Houston-metro area in response to Hurricane Harvey on Aug. 26, 2017. The devastating storm still raged on by the time the aircrews arrived.

Within three days of Hurricane Harvey making landfall, 16 members of the 128th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment (MPAD) were preparing for movement to Texas. Planning for the worst case scenario, the crew went through the whole process of SRP (Soldier Readiness Program) prior to deploying. Once in Texas, the MPAD team found improved conditions. Texas military officials asked the Utah unit to capture imagery and tell stories of the military’s response to the hurricane.

Once the initial shock wore off after seeing the overwhelming destruction, the aircrews immediately dove into exhausting days of search-and-rescue and reconnaissance operations. From dawn to dusk and continuously refueling whenever necessary, the Utah Guardsmen relentlessly searched for citizens requiring help and extraction from unsafe conditions.

Soldiers had opportunities to go out on Chinook helicopters to drop hay bales to stranded cattle, do stories on rescued animals, see families returned to their homes after being gone for two weeks, and see the ramifications of a storm of such magnitude. “We saw soldiers helping the public,” said Maj. Ryan Sutherland, commander of the 128th MPAD. —utAh nAtiOnAL guARd FOR VALOR

ORANGE, Texas. Aug. 31, 2017. Spc. Curtis Jeffs, UH-60 Black Hawk crew chief from A Co., 2-211th GSAB, operates the hoist to evacuate residents out of the rising flood waters to a casualtycollection point. Over the course of two days, the crews rescued nearly 40 people. photo by 2-211 th aviation battalion


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(ABOVE) BEAUMONT, Texas. Aug. 30, 2017. Sgt. 1st Class Zach Kesler, flight paramedic, G Co, 2-211th GSAB, helps a little girl off the UH-60 Black Hawk at a casualty-collection point. Kesler and his crew extracted her and two other family members by hoist during Hurricane Harvey. photo by 2-211 th aviation battalion (LEFT TOP) PORT ARTHUR, Texas. Sept. 9, 2017. Pvt 1st Class Mykalob Stephens and members of his Oklahoma National Guard unit, help patch up victims of Hurricane Harvey. His unit happened to be in the area, performing a neighborhood canvass for anyone who still needed help. 128 th mpad / spc . nathaniel free (LEFT CENTER) BEAUMONT, Texas. Sept. 9, 2017. Texas Army National Guard soldiers play with puppies found after Hurricane Harvey in a sterile medical tent at the Ford Arena. The interaction is what medical staff call “puppy therapy” where the soldiers walked dogs, played with them and gave them baths. 128 th mpad / pvt . elizabeth johnson (LEFT BOTTOM) BEAUMONT, Texas. Sept. 11, 2017. Utah National Guard soldiers and Texas Military Department personnel loaded CH-47 Chinook helicopters provided by the Ohio National Guard with hay and feed for cattle that have been stranded due to flooding from Hurricane Harvey. 128 th mpad / spc . nathaniel free (BOTTOM) BEAUMONT, Texas. Sept. 11, 2017. Soldiers from Task Force 56 and first responders came together for a 9/11 tribute at Regional Support Area Beaumont. 128 th mpad / sgt . scott wolfe



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hroughout 2017, Tooele Army Depot (also known as TEAD), celebrated a historic anniversary—75 years. Not only was the anniversary celebrated by the U.S. Army, but the entire Tooele community was included in the back story. Since TEAD’s establishment in 1942 as Tooele Ordnance Depot, both the city and county had played a critical role in supporting the nation’s conventional munitions stockpile and ensuring core resources and readiness to constantly evolving priorities, transitions and evolutions. All in support of the nation’s warfighters across the globe, fighting for our country’s freedoms. Many of TEAD’s almost 500 Department of the Army civilian employees have been part of the Depot for multiple-generations and are the backbone of the civilian militar y family and community—with more than 43 percent having a military connection (veteran, activeduty, reser vist). TEAD’s employee base spans eight Utah counties with more than 77 percent residing within Tooele County.


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TOOELE ARMY DEPOT. 2017. The Department of the Army’s, “Big Red” Locomotives roll on approximately 43 miles of rail every day, supporting the Army’s strategic mission. The Depot has one 120-ton and three 80-ton locomotives that support the mission. tead photos / lally laksbergs



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hen George Diehl accepted a temporary position at the Tooele Army Depot in November 1942, he had no idea he would spend the next 33 years of his life there before retiring in 1975. Born in Morrison, Ill., where he attended public schools, Diehl accepted a temporary assignment at Savanna Army Depot located in Savanna, Ill., just days before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. About a year later, he accepted a transfer, not to exceed six months, to a new depot under construction in Utah. He was assigned to the handling of munitions. Diehl remembers that when he first moved to Tooele, he obtained room and board with a local couple for the first few months, then moved into Depot housing for bachelors. Because he was involved “24/7” with Depot work, his social life at that time was very limited. But on Saturday nights, he sometimes went bowling or drove to the Handy Corner in Grantsville, a coffee shop where a dance band played every Saturday night. The Depot Officers Club got started at that time and it provided social life for the military and their families. Depot employees also had access to local movie theaters, city and canyon parks and an indoor swimming pool. Diehl noted that while many social activities were centered around the Mormon Church, which was the predominant religious organization in the area, other recreation activities were also available. He also observed that a great cultural and religious division occurred between residents of Newtown, a section in eastern Tooele built for smelter employee families, and residents of Tooele Proper prior to World War II (but lessened somewhat during the war), because many Newtown residents, who were pre-dominantly Catholic (and some non-denominational residents) worked at the local smelter, while many residents living in Tooele Proper were LDS. This cultural and religious division was also evidenced somewhat in politics, Diehl said, “Tooele Proper so outnumbered the people in Newtown that it didn’t become a political issue, it became more of a social and church divisive issue. I’m told that it was quite evident in schools—that Newtown residents were more or less ostracized unto themselves.” But Diehl said a change in school administration, and the new principal of schools, Sterling Harris, recognized the need to bridge that gap and inroads were made to minimize differences and to bring both elements of the community together.

—Edited from an audio interview by Benjamin Kiser on Feb. 8, 2017 in Murray, Utah. Available at tooeledepothistory.omeka.net

THE WWII YEARS: ESTABLISHING THE MISSION Shortly after the Japanese attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, the U.S. Army was determined to expand facilities of Utah’s Ogden Arsenal, but because it was hemmed in on all sides, the Army began looking feverishly for an alternative location. In January 1942, a rumor began circulating that one of the nation’s largest ammunition depots would be built in the isolated desert west of Salt Lake City. The rumor turned out to be true. A delegation from the War Department in Washington D.C., and the local District Engineer Office made an initial survey of roughly 25,000 uninhabited acres near the town of Tooele which was mostly sagebrush. Within a few weeks, the U.S. government purchased 24,961 acres of land west of Tooele at a cost of $94,221 to use for an ordnance storage and supply depot to support the war effort. A $26.7 million construction contract shared by four private contractors was awarded and construction began. In the winter of 1942, Tooele Ordnance Depot (TOD) received its first mission. On Dec. 8, the Depot began storage operations for vehicles, small arms, and fire control equipment prior to shipment to combat units. Additional mission assignments followed rapidly, including overhaul and modification of tanks, tracked vehicles and various armaments. The Tooele site was chosen for several reasons: the inland location was defendable from attack by sea or air; the sandy loam soil upon which it was built geologically allowed the soil to absorb shocks, a good feature to have in case of accidental detonations or bombing; the dry climate lessened the danger of rust and corrosion to stored ammunition, artillery and vehicles; and finally, the site was uninhabited and without any existing structures, formerly being used for sheep grazing. Dust storms became so prevalent during construction that operations had to be shut down. The problem of shifting sands and blowing dust was not solved until later that year when Utah State University personnel planted drought resistant grasses to prevent erosion. Despite these problems and shortages of manpower and materials, the contract was completed by January 1943. Between 1942 and 1943, construction at the Depot established three areas: ammunition storage area, the maintenance and storage area, and the administrative area.

(LEFT) George Diehl worked 33 years as the civilian executive assistant to the military commander, 1942-75. (RIGHT) 2017. Diehl with his son looks through historical display at the 75th Anniversary, 2017. tead photos


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Located on the western portion of the site, the ammunition storage area covered eight square miles and had more than 800 “igloos built for high explosives”—archtype concrete, earth-covered, storage magazines, each with a capacity to store 500,000 pounds of ammunition ranging february


(ABOVE) 1987. An aerial view of the maintenance storage area with rows and rows of tanks, tracked-wheeled vehicles and assorted trucks. (RIGHT TOP) 1940s. Blowing dust storms often hampered or shut down operations. Removal of tumbleweeds was an ongoing part of the cleanup. (RIGHT CENTER) 1971. Retreading and off-road tire repair were a “standard” of maintenance operations. (RIGHT) Quality inspection and repair of track-wheeled vehicles or “tanks” were another part of the maintenance mission. (RIGHT BOTTOM) The “ammo” mission includes the storage, inspection and demolition of everything from “bullets to bombs.” tead photos

in size from bullets to bombs. Primary buildings in the ammunition renovation area housed the major ammunition demilitarization, or “demil,” operations but were supported by numerous small facilities that provided paint and minor repair shops. The above-ground magazine consisted of 12 hollow block buildings. (All of these buildings remain and are still used for similar functions.) The maintenance and storage area, on the northeast corner of the site, consisted of 31 warehouses of varying sizes, utility buildings and other maintenance facilities. Under a separate contract, a $1 million tank repair shop to establish a maintenance facility capable of rebuilding vehicles and artillery pieces was completed in 1943. The administrative area, consisted of a headquarters section with officers’ housing, a 1,080 unit Lanham Housing Project, a barracks area for enlisted personnel, a hospital and a prisoner of war camp. The headquarters section included the main headquarters building, a fire station and visiting officers’ quarters. The quarters expanded for the WWII workforce and included a shopping center, post office, and elementary school. (Today, six community buildings remain, but the housing units were declared excess after the war and were eventually sold or demolished.) As war continued, the TOD maintenance mission expanded again with the establishment of a large maintenance shop, and they began to rebuild, modify and reclaim howitzer motor carriages and artillery pieces, including anti-aircraft artillery up to 155 millimeter. Repair of optical instruments, and the reclamation and salvage of unrepairable or obsolete weapons, ammunition, and vehicles joined the Depot’s growing arsenal. The rapid construction of the military installation was very disruptive to the tranquil farming community, with thousands of people moving in from all february


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uring World War II, the War Department ordered the construction of a storage depot for its Chemical Corps’ toxic materials on 19,364 acres of land 20 miles south of Tooele in Rush Valley and was purchased for $80,000. The site was remote, isolated, far from densely populated communities. Prior to its installation, the new depot was referenced as the “St. John Chemical Warfare Ammunition Storage Depot or simply the “St. John Site.” When the completed new storage area came online, it was named the Deseret Chemical Warfare Depot (DCWD), a Class II Chemical Corps installation, designated as an activity of Tooele Ordnance Depot. It consisted of 140 “igloo”-shaped magazines, two large magazines, seven warehouses, 32 toxic sheds and several transitory storage shelters storing chemical agents and chemical-agent-filled munitions. When it was established, this government-owned facility was virtually a self-contained community. In addition to operational buildings, the government constructed a theater, shops, stores, laundry, cafe, and housing facilities. It had been a restricted facility, and estimates of the exact number of village inhabitants or the exact number of employees at any time were difficult to determine. However, it was estimated that approximately 700 to 1,000 guards, laborers, auto mechanics, machinists, truck drivers, painters, storekeepers, nurses, and typists were employed during most of World War II. By May 1944, the Town of Deseret was completed at a cost of $5 million. “It was a great community to live in,” said Richard Trujillo, who retired after 40 years working for the Deseret Chemical Depot (DCD) and Tooele Army Depot. Trujillo lived on base as a child and retired after 40 years at the Depot. After the war ended, this area was used to house single men working at Deseret Chemical Depot and was nicknamed “Tin Town.” Following the war, the Depot phased down. In August 1946, the Deseret Chemical Warfare Depot (DCWD) and Dugway Proving Ground were joined together to form one command, then in September 1946, the DCWD was redesignated Deseret Chemical Depot (DCD). Shortly after the Korean War broke out, the Depot’s mission changed to include a maintenance repair shop of certain categories of Chemical Corps equipment. In May of 1955, the Tooele Ordnance Depot took official command of the Deseret Chemical Depot and the name was changed to Deseret Depot Activity. Between 1956 and 1969, the Deseret Chemical Depot went through a revolving door of eight commanders.

rebuilding Public truSt Although government production of chemical munitions ceased in 1965, approximately 42 percent of the chemical munitions of the United States was stored at DCD. Both government and public attention was focused on the potential dangers of open-air testing and stockpiling of chemical munitions, which led to the planning and eventual construction of a disposal plant in the western part of the South Area. In the fall of 1969, the Deseret Depot Activity was renamed Tooele Army Depot South and became the Chemical Ammunition Division of Tooele Army Depot’s Ammunition Directorate. TEAD took the lead in the construction of a “transportable facility” designed to destroy obsolete chemical munitions. This would eventually become


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(ABOVE) 1943. War housing at Deseret Chemical Warfare Depot. (RIGHT TOP) Mid-1960s. Aerial of the town of Deseret, with barracks, maintenance area and storage are in the far background. The WWII POW camp is visible in the upper right. (RIGHT) DESERET CHEMICAL DEPOT. February 2005. A forklift operator loads a pallet of VX rockets into an on-site container for movement from storage to the Tooele Chemical Agent Disposal Facility. dcd photos the Chemical Agent Munitions Disposal System (CAMDS). Construction on CAMDS began in 1974 and actual disposal operations began Sept. 10, 1979, with the destruction of the first M55 nerve agent rocket. Because of the notoriety and potential danger of this project and the extreme public sensitivity regarding toxic chemicals, an elaborate system of chemical-agent detectors was developed and tested at the CAMDS plant. Perimeter monitoring stations were located near the boundaries of the Depot and also in the plant to help protect against any fugitive emissions that would affect the public or employees in or at the plant. During DCD’s operation, toxic nerve agents in the U.S. military weapons inventory became, from time to time, the subject of media and public concern. Despite the public fears over the safety of operations, during CAMDS’ disposal operations from September 1979 to January 2005, more than 203,000 pounds of chemical agent were neutralized and more than 159,000 pounds of chemical agent were incinerated, resulting in the elimination of more than 39,000 chemical agent-filled munitions. When asked how DCD convinced the local populace they were safe, Trujillo explained: “We were as transparent as possible. We held meetings, hosted tours, held exercises. We invited the entire town and whole county to participate—they were a part of it.” And once that trust was built locally, the Depot’s workforce became “the best public relations team.” Workers and subcontractors came from all over, including from the other side of the Oquirrh Mountains. In November 1983, a 45-member United Nations Committee on Disarmament representing 40 countries toured CAMDS to observe and examine proposed methods to destroy chemical munitions. And in November 1987, Ambassador Max Friedersdorf, head of the U.S. delegation to the Geneva Convention, along with six Soviet diplomats, including Soviet Ambassador to the U.N. Conference on Disarmament Yuri Nazarkin, and Soviet General Robert Razuvanov, toured CAMDS. In January 1993, the U.S. signed the Chemical Weapons Convention Treaty, an international treaty prohibiting development, production, stockpiling, transfer and use of chemical weapons, calling for elimination of stockpiles by 2007. february


over the United States. “It was quite a challenge,” said George Diehl, the first civilian assistant to the military commander, in a 2017 audio interview by Benjamin Kiser. Because local residents were so limited in military experience, “We couldn’t recruit locally to satisfy the needs of the Depot,” Diehl said. “So most of the Depot’s employees came from other parts of the country.” To help fill the need for manpower, the Depot brought in people from the Japanese-American internment camp at Topaz near Delta. They ran buses from cities in the Southwest to bring in immigrants from Mexico and American Indians from the reservations. “They were active in loading cars with ammunition and preparing military equipment,” said Diehl. German and Italian POWs from Camp Warner were also used for service activities not directly associated with munitions. For instance, German prisoners were used for delivering supplies to the munitions facilities. German POWs were sent to TOD’s Camp Warner, the Deseret Chemical Depot in Rush Valley, and Dugway Proving Ground. These prisoners stayed less than nine months, and did not return to Camp Warner until 1946 on the last leg of their journey before being transported back to Germany. Once the war ended in Japan, Depot officials began detonating munitions left over from the war. “It created a disturbance and became a point of great concern to residents, who felt we were damaging buildings with our demolition activities at Tooele,” said Diehl. “It was challenging to get rid of the munitions and convince the people in the area that we were being careful, that we didn’t cause damage to outside installations.” finiSHing uP dutieS A ceremony was held in 1996 recognizing the Tooele Chemical Activity as being officially taken over by the Chemical and Biological Defense Command located in Aberdeen, Md; and renamed Deseret Chemical Depot. In May of 1998, Teledyne Brown, a Huntsville, Ala., based engineering company, arrived at the DCD and began setting up the Rapid Response System, a mobile system for demilitarization of Chemical Agent Identification Sets (CAIS). In October 2011, the Tooele Army Depot received approval to assume command of the DCD. During a special U.S. Army ceremony, DCD was formally closed July 11, 2013. What Army officials called a transfer of property—taking DCD’s 19,000-plus acres and transferring them to TEAD, the Depot increased its mission foot print with 19,364 acres, 208 storage igloos, 34 above ground igloos and 86 additional buildings. In a Team Deseret publication, Don E. Barclay, acting director, U.S. Army Chemical Materials Agency, applauded the Deseret Team by saying, “You have destroyed the chemical nerve agents GB, GA and VX, and the blister agents H, HD, HT as well as lewisite contained in ton containers; rockets and rocket warheads; 155mm, 105mm and 8-inch projectiles; 4.2-inch mortars; Weteye and 750-pound bombs; land mines and spray tanks. Through multiple challenges, you safely destroyed a chemical weapons stockpile larger than the next three largest U.S. chemical weapons stockpile sites combined. And it is a result of your dedication, expertise and selfless sacrifice and service.” —webb FOR VALOR february


The Depot met the challenge by openly discussing the problem with leaders of the local community. They made arrangements for a geological study on community buildings inspecting for any damage. They also invited community leaders to a picnic at the Depot so residents could witness the detonations.

KOREAN WAR to 9/11: REDRAWING THE MISSION The Korean War brought a massive upsurge in activity and employment. The Depot’s workforce peaked with 5,359 civilians in January 1953. Although most of the facilities at Tooele were originally designed for temporary service, the Korean War forced the renovation of many World War II structures. In May 1955, TOD assimilated Deseret Depot Activity and the functions of the Ogden Arsenal. In 1962, the Depot took over distribution of ordnance supplies within the state and the machine shop of the Naval Supply Depot at Clearfield, Utah. With the consolidation of the Army’s technical services, the Depot was redesignated the Tooele Army Depot (TEAD). TEAD has assumed command and control of the non-tactical va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y




s the only full-time fire department in the area, the Tooele Army Depot Fire Department’s primary responsibility is to serve and protect its Army employees and customers. Yet, the fire department also provides assistance, when called upon, to a number of volunteer fire departments throughout the county.

While the department’s primary responsibility is protecting the personnel and structures located on the Tooele Army Depot, Tate said in his career, the Depot Fire Department has assisted on hundreds of incidents including structural and wildland fires and medical incidents throughout Tooele County.

Ironically, the other two full-time fire departments in Tooele County are located at military installations—Dugway Proving Grounds and the Utah Training and Test Range, which also provide assistance when called upon.

The Tooele Army Depot Fire Department, established in 194243, has mutual aid agreements (MAA) with all other emergency response agencies in Tooele County, and Tate believes the department has a good working relationship with all of those agencies.

“We are a small department, so we rely heavily on the community to help us,” Tooele Army Depot Fire Chief Craig Tate said. “Tooele County also relies on us,” and Tate notes that “we have a true brotherhood and sisterhood with the (various) volunteer fire departments. When the siren goes off, we all have a duty to act and to respond professionally.”

mutually beneficially Tate, who has been with the Tooele Army Depot Fire Department for 27 years, leads and is part of a 29-member fire crew, that has responsibility for protecting a total land area of 40,000 acres, and includes the operation of two stations—one at the Depot’s North Area and one at the South Area in Rush Valley. Fire Department personnel are trained to respond to structure fires, vehicle fires, wildland fires, ammunition fires, and other emergency incidents, with three Class A fire engines and one platform ladder truck. It also has one ambulance each at both stations. All of the department’s firefighters are emergency management technician trained. Currently, out of the 29 firefighters employed with the Depot Fire Department, one is female. Of the firefighters, 27 are military veterans and six are active reservists in the various armed services. The firefighters, includes those who reside in the surrounding communities, as well as those who commute from as far north as Eden and North Ogden, and as far south as Utah County.


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The Depot Fire Department regularly trains with Tooele City Fire Department, and the Depot has served as host of the Utah State Regional Fire School a several times, which draws firefighters from all over the state. They also cross train with the Utah National Guard’s 85th Civil Support Team, which has a part in supporting civil authorities. Tate acknowledges that his department personnel are always in the process of new trainings. “On average, my firefighters, per person, have 235 hours a year in training,” he said. Even though the Depot Fire Department provides services to a military installation, Tate says the basic firefighting procedures are the same for civil or military fire departments, and his fire department, along with other fire departments throughout the United States, follow the National Incident Management System (NIMS) which is overseen through Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). NIMS provides a common, nationwide approach to enable the whole community to work together to manage all threats and hazards. NIMS applies to all incidents, regardless of cause, size, location, or complexity. Tate acknowledges that the firefighters in his department have risky jobs, especially in dealing with ammunition, which is stored at the Depot. “It is our job to make sure they (Army Depot) employees are safe and complying with all safety codes. And then if something does go bad, our job is to take that event and try to make it better.” feburary


generator rail, equipment repair facility located at Hill Air Force Base in 1964. The Cold War effort tended to bring people together. According to Diehl, workers “were very dedicated to the (Cold) war effort, though they were not in uniform, they recognized they were contributing to the war effort. Everyone was doing their best for a common cause,” he added. Author Ouida Blanthorn wrote in, A History of Tooele County, published by the Utah State Historical Society as part of the Utah Centennial County History Series, early on the Depot became noted for its efficient and economical operation:

(FAR LEFT TOP) 1956. Part of the original headquarters section, the fire house has always been at the center of the Depot. (FAR LEFT BOTTOM) Aug. 10, 2017. The 75th Anniversary celebration brought together employees, retirees, community members and state military leaders to celebrate the firecrews’ support of military readiness. (ABOVE CENTER AND RIGHT) April 2017. Members of the Tooele Army Depot Fire Department host an emergency response exercise with the Utah National Guard 85th Civil Support Team and the Wyoming Nationa Guard 84th CST. The exercise was part of a quarterly program instituted to test the emergency response and mitigation of incidents on TEAD. tead photos / lally laksbergs

making a difference Tate himself has a rich family history connection with area fire departments. His father, Tom Tate, served as a Tooele City fire chief, as did his grandfather, Del White, while a great uncle, Toby Shields, served as assistant chief at the Tooele Army Depot. When his father was serving in the Tooele Fire Department, Tate remembers that whenever a fire was discovered in the city, a loud siren would go off, and all city firefighters would drive to the fire station to then be dispatched to the fire location. “I was always begging my Dad to go with him,” Tate said, noting that his father oftentimes let him ride along, with one rule: “I couldn’t get out of the car.” Looking back on his extensive fire department experience at both the Tooele Fire Department (25 years of active service and 5 years on a senior list) and Tooele Army Depot Fire Department (27 years), Tate says he has enjoyed it immensely. “If you have a Type A personality, you are going to love this job. I’m an adrenaline junky. It’s also fun and an opportunity to serve your community and make a difference,” he said. Tate enjoys trying to help make a bad thing a good outcome. “When you first enter the Depot, come down the hill and see all the fire trucks sitting right out front … I get chills,“ said Kathy Anderson, TEAD’s chief of staff, remembering growing up in Tooele and her 37 years working at the Depot. She adds, ”We are the area’s first responders. This is how the Depot and the community really tie tightly together. When we get that call, we roll.” —WEBB FOR VALOR feburary


“Depot personnel regularly broke performance records supplying the troops. It was difficult to acquire many pieces of equipment, supplies, tools, and other items during the war years, so depot employees designed moneysaving ideas and programs which reclaimed material or replaced missing items. These factors led to even more assignments, eventually the depot was considered the major ordnance supply center in the West. By the spring of 1967, the depot’s civilian workforce as on an aroundthe-clock work schedule supporting a modern Army combat in Southeast Asia. But following the pull-out from Vietnam, the manpower greatly decreased and the mission changed again to become the DOD’s primary facility for overhaul and repair of tactical wheeled vehicles and power-generation equipment. In the mid-1970s, under new leadership, Tooele became a Depot Complex. An ammunition maintenance facility was completed in 1970 and a demilitarization plant finished in 1976. Both facilities were located in an isolated portion in the southwest corner of the Depot. During the ’80s, the U.S. Army engaged in the largest peacetime modernization in its history; and again, TEAD shifted to align new weapon and equipment systems, often developing and fielding their own creations. A 1993 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) decision recommended the Depot’s mission be reduced. The Army completed the first transfer of free title of the surplus property to Tooele City’s Redevelopment Agency which included nearly 1,700 acres and 258 buildings. The realignment of the maintenance and supply missions were completed in 1995.

Post 9/11 to present: REDEFINING THE MISSION Tooele Army Depot has had a major economic and cultural impact to the state of Utah. In fact, according to the 2015 Economic Impact Study completed by Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute at the University of Utah, shows TEAD put approximately $114 million back into the Utah economy, with a payroll of $44 million annually, and 77 percent of the Depot’s employees currently living within Tooele County. Take Kathy Anderson, currently the Depot’s Chief of Staff, with 37 years of dedicated civilian federal service, all at the va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


Depot proper. She worked various positions throughout all organizations of the Depot, coming up through the administrative ranks, including 15 years as the public affairs officer. She has lived in Grantsville nearly her entire life. Within Anderson’s family work history, her father, Fred Roberts, who also worked at the Depot for 32 years before retiring; and now her son, which is third generation, works at the Depot. She is hoping he too, “will work there until he retires from federal service.” “This is was my dad’s home, this is my home, and I hope this will be my son’s home.” She spoke of the times that her and her father would have discussions regarding the depot’s history, what the current mission is, and what holds for the Depot’s future. “I still learn so much from him with every discussion.” During the First Gulf War in the early ’90s, the TEAD played a key role in repainting, and retreading tires to make vehicles fit in with the desert landscape in the Middle East. And again, post 9/11, the Depot played a large part in the Operation Iraqi Freedom effort with their role shifting from the vehicle maintenance to shipping, receiving and storage of conventional ammunition. “I know our purpose is to support the warfighter,” Anderson said, “But these functions stand out in my mind as ‘major’ missions. And we’re still doing it today.” In more recent years, the Depot’s mission has been twofold—first, as a major power projection platform for all services supporting customers’ ammunition needs worldwide. TEAD capabilities include storage, inspection, maintenance and testing of training stocks as well as war reserve. And second, to serve as a life-cycle management installation in the Ammunition Equipment Directorate (AED) providing the design, development, manufacture and fielding of ammunition-related equipment under the Ammunition Peculiar Equipment (APE). This equipment is used in the maintenance and demilitarization of munitions throughout the world. David Ayala, chief of business development, has worked 36 years at the Depot starting at age 21, all as a civilian. He has worked mostly with the AED which involves engineering, design and fabrication of ammunition equipment. “One advantage with my job is I’ve traveled the world,” Ayala said. (LEFT TOP) Aug. 10, 2017. The 75th Anniversary celebration brought together employees, retirees, community members and state military leaders to celebrate the Depot’s service to country and continuing missions supporting military readiness. (LEFT CENTER) August 2017. The installation’s “energy corridor” consists of two turbines and a 429 stirling solar, array field producing 60 percent of the Depot’s needed electrical power. (LEFT) April 2017. A munitions storage container is loaded on the rail line by using one of TEAD’s super stacker lifts. (BELOW) Cattle graze among the more than 900 “igloos” located at TEAD North. tead photos


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With TEAD South taking over the land and facilities of the DCD, Ayala noted that his emphasis has changed to bringing in tenants to work with the Depot. Ayala said that is how the Depot got involved with the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Logistic Center which led to initiatives to form public-private partnerships that include teaming with private industry and government tenants. Hill Air Force Base and Safety Management Systems (SMS) of West Jordan are two of the Depot’s most constant business partners. TEAD’s workforce now includes 500 employees, down from its peak of 5,000 more than 50 years ago. However, it is still the third largest employer in the county, behind Tooele School District and Walmart Distribution Center. One challenge currently facing the Depot is a workforce in transition with 28 percent of the workforce eligible for retirement. Depot officials are developing strategic plans for hiring and retaining a skilled workforce. In other areas of the county, the Depot’s impact is felt in ways other than financial. Tooele County School District Communications Director Marie Denson said, “Tooele County School District benefits from Tooele Army Depot’s presence which impacts the community and students by creating a sense of pride in our military and country. We appreciate the relationship we have with the soldiers and civilians who work out there.” Still, the Depot continues to play an important role with local communities. When the TEAD celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2017, the Depot opened its doors for the first time since 2011 to have visitors tour the Depot. Between 200300 citizens took part in the tours. Some things remain constant for the Depot, such as: a dedicated and highly-skilled civilian workforce with unique capabilities, and a core mission of being DOD’s premiere western region conventional ammunition hub supporting the warfighter readiness through superior receipt, storage, issue, demil and renovation of conventional ammunition and the design, manufacture, fielding and maintenance of ammunition peculiar equipment.



he White Mountain Shadow Logistics Center, located at the Tooele Army Depot, is a receiving, storage and shipping facility for unmanned aerial systems (AVSs) often referred to as “drones”, with specially-purposed support equipment known as air vehicle transports (AVTs), according to Liza Goble, a Department of Defense employee. Textron Systems, based in Baltimore, Md., works with the Center and became a tenant at Tooele in 2009, because of the air space restrictions at nearby Dugway and storage and shipping logistics opportunities afforded by TEAD. When the Center first arrived there was some curiosity among community members over what the purpose would be for storing and shipping “drones,” Goble said. But over a period of years, the level of public trust in the drone program has increased mainly because of the community awareness and involvement of the program at TEAD and Dugway Proving Ground. When equipment arrives at the center, the team does a 100 percent inventory of all equipment to prepare for palletization and storage until needed. “We are the last to touch the [Shadow platform drone system] equipment before the Soldiers get it,” Goble said, adding she wants to make sure the right equipment gets to the Soldiers when they need it. Each year, the demand for the drone platform throughout the U.S. Army increases. Goble says the Logistics Center has seen an increase in receiving and shipping since 2009. Goble, who has been supporting the military for 45 years and lives in Tooele said, “I am truly blessed. I have a great product and great people who support me. It is wonderful to be in Utah. The support we get to support our Soldiers is phenomenal.” —WEBB FOR VALOR

Looking back at their careers, both Anderson and Ayala say it has been rewarding. Anderson says, “It’s a great place to work. and a great community to live in. .” A native of St. George, Loren R. Webb has been a reporter in community journalism and teacher of history and English in southern Utah and Nevada. He is an avid historian and spends his summers volunteering at Camp Floyd & Stagecoach Inn State Park in Fairfield. Tooele Army Depot Public Affairs Office and Public Affairs Officer Lally Laksbergs contributed to this article. Additional resources include: They Kept ‘Em Rolling: The Tooele Army Depot, 1942-1962, by Leonard Arrington and Thomas Alexander; Tooele Army Depot, 1942-2000: 58 years of History; Tooele Army Depot: A Brief History; A History of Tooele County by Ouida Blanthorn. february


U.S. Army Spc. Jefferic S. Brinkley ( left ) and Spc. Nathan C. Phillips move an AAI RQ-7 Shadow to the pneumatic launcher before takeoff on Forward Operating Base Salerno, Khowst province, Afghanistan, Aug. 27, 2013. The Shadow is packaged and shipped from Tooele Army Depot to troops in the field. department of defense photo va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


getty images / vgajic


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Family Matters E ve r y s e r v i c e m e m be r n e e d s a s t r o n g a n d h e a l t h y s u p po r t s y s te m to d o w h a t i s a s k e d o f t h e m . T h e e ve r w i d e n i n g ba n d s t h a t e n c i r c l e s t h e i n d iv i d u a l i n c l u d e s pa r t n e r s , f a m i l y, pe e r s a n d c o m m u n i t y. VA LO R e x pl o r e s r el a t i o n s h i p s t h a t c o n n e c t s , e m b ra c e s a n d u pl i f t s .

STRENGTHENING RELATIONSHIPS ‘WE SHOULD ALWAYS BE WORKING ON OUR EVER-EXPANDING HORIZON’ by David Bringhurst w i t h m i c h e ll e b r i d g e s for valor m aga z i n e


ilitary life and culture can have a significant impact on the family and especially the marital relationship, for better or worse. The fact is, most military couples are quite resilient and experience great growth in their relationship during the time of service for their military family member. However, there are those times when a partner’s military service can severely impact the marital relationship, or exacerbate issues already present. It is estimated that over 2.2 million military personnel have deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, among those who have deployed 68.2 percent are married; in Utah that number is closer to 72 percent.

TRIGGERING RELATIONSHIP ‘FLASH POINTS’ Some of those relationships “flash points” can include relocation for new duty assignments, multiple deployment or behavioral health issues founded in combat or injury. Frequent moves every few years, a hallmark of the military life for active-duty personnel and their families, are an important part of a service member’s career progression. Such frequent relocations, every two to three years for most military families, can strain even the most resilient among us. Often it is up to those left at home to deal with the packing and unpacking while the service member off doing their job. Obviously, deployment to a war zone, humanitarian february


mission or other such separation can severely strain marital and partner relationships. The military deployment cycle has been examined by family experts over the years and emotional patterns of adjustment between partners have been noticeable. These patterns are now referred to as the Emotional Cycle of Deployment ( J. Morse, 2006). The seven adjustment stages aren’t hard and fast, but are rather some of the most reoccurring issues that have been found among military couples experiencing deployment. Two of the seven stages are experienced prior to deployment—anticipation of departure, detachment and withdrawal; two during deployment— emotional disorganization, recovery and stabilization; and three stages are apparent during post-deployment— anticipation of return, adjustment and renegotiation, reintegration and stabilization The impact of deployment separation differs for every family and couple, research shows 20-30 percent of military members are negatively impacted by deployment. The most common mental health impacts include symptoms of anxiety, depression, and those related to trauma (combat stress). Sometimes these symptoms are not readily apparent, often they do not surface until some months after the service member has been home. Instead the couple may experience a quasi-honeymoon period upon the immediate return of the service member, with the service member being happy to be with his or her partner back on American soil, and the partner va l o r : a s a l u t e t o u ta h ’ s v e t e r a n s a n d m i l i ta r y


who remained at home being happy their service member is alive and back in their life and able to resume their family responsibilities. But the those who were negatively impacted by the deployment, whether the service member who left or the partner who remained home, they may eventually begin to exhibit the symptoms created by the stress of the deployment. All of these symptoms of course cause their loved ones to become concerned and feel as if the partner who left for deployment is not the partner they have now. If such issues are left to fester eventually the relationship is destroyed or action must be taken. There are multiple ways somebody will get “to that point,” said Chaplain Gerald R. White, who has spent almost 42 years in the Utah National Guard. He explains the individual may realize within themselves that something is not right— so they try to find a mechanism, a system, an agency, somebody that can help them. A spouse or family member will basically say “I’m done.” After putting up with the anger, aggressiveness, isolation, laziness, despondency or the “just can’t get off the couch.” Or an external force—spouse, family, friend, commander or combination—can drive the need to seek help. Chaplains have been embedded at the battalion level for a reason said White. “We want our soldiers to be able to have that face-to-face, boot-to-boot, heart-to-heart talk with someone who is familiar with them.” He added, “my rank isn’t as important as my position.” In many incidents a chaplain may not diagnose but can say “why don’t you come, sit and talk?” And if it seems to be beyond the scope of what might be an hour or a couple visits, then a referral to more extensive services somewhere else within the community may be necessary.

STRENGTHEN THE BONDS OF RELATIONSHIPS There may be an initial hesitancy seek therapy to counteract anxiety, depression, trauma symptoms or to address social misconduct experienced by each member of the family. Couples may have concerns that seeking treatment will in some way impact the service member’s career, or the veteran’s future employment. Other concerns raised are related to perceptions that receiving treatment somehow implies there is something “wrong” with the individuals, or it suggests they are “weak.” To fight some of these stigmas the Department of Defense (DOD) created Real Warriors (realwarriors.net) to reinforce the idea that it takes real strength and courage to face personal or marital problems through therapy. Furthermore, couples may experience difficulties in seeking counseling services, such as a lack of availability of resources in their community. Of course couples with mild relationship issues can often use self-help resources to resolve their concerns. Websites 32

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like Military One Source (militaryonesource.mil/) can be an excellent source for such self-help. This cite also provides access to free online and/or telephonic counseling services to service members and their families. Here in Utah a unique resource available to our couples and their families called Healthy Relationships Utah (healthyrelationshipsutah.org). This program provides free courses throughout the state on: smart dating, couples, fatherhood, parenting, and step families. The Couple LINKS (Lasting Intimacy through Nurturing, Knowledge & Skills) course is a researched-based program and includes considerations for couples who are or were military connected. Over the years that Danielle Cook, a licensed social worker, as facilitated the CoupleLINKS course, three things that people have a “hard time talking about are physical intimacy, meeting each other needs and communication.” She explains that the classes are designed to give couples the tools to start talking to each other and begin building healthy relationships. Cook says even whether “we’re healthy or unhealthy” couples can benefit from the classes. “We should always be working on our relationships—on our ever expanding horizons. Whatever life brings you. It’s a good place to start.” Couples therapy can be an integral part of strengthening relationships especially when things are more serious and difficulties do not respond to self-help efforts. Couples february


RESOURCES FOR HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS WITH UTAH STATE UNIVERSITY Healthy Relationships Utah offers FREE reseach-based relationship education courses throughout the state of Utah as part of Utah State University Extension. Classes in smart dating, couples, fatherhood, parenting and step-families. healthyrelationshipsutah.org MILITARY ONE SOURCE Military resource providing 24/7 support for military personnel, spouses, family members and survivors. Find answers and guidance from those who have been there. 800–342–9647, militaryonesource.mil REAL WARRIORS: RESILIENCY PROGRAM FOR MILITARY FAMILIES Non-medical counseling available through the Military Family Life Counselor (UMFLC) program and through Military OneSource to talk with a crisis counselor). 866–966–1020, realwarriors.net VET CENTERS getty images / solstock

therapists—social workers, psychologist, mental health counselors, and marriage and family therapists—are able to provide couples with psychoeducation regarding attachment and other problems that can occur during the various phases of deployment. Those trained to work with military and veteran families can be especially perceptive and helpful. At the VA Vet Centers (saltlakecity.va.gov/vet_centers) therapy for individual, couples and family is available. Even individual therapy for a family member is provided, if the issue is related to their service member’s symptoms and diagnosis. Starla Olsen, a marriage and family therapist by training, has served many veterans and their families at the Salt Lake location. When it comes to couple issues she highlights the attachment challenges that occur due to deployment separation, as well as the shifting roles and reintegration issues that often arise. She reports that therapists like herself use a variety of evidence-based therapies to treat and counsel individuals and couples, but points out, experts have multiple ways they can intervene in difficult martial situations in order to help couples recover from their most difficult circumstances. Regardless, it takes courage to approach a mental health professional, but doing is often the first step toward adapting and overcoming. Fight on. David L. Bringhurst, Ph.D., LCSW, grew up in Utah before serving as a social worker for 21 years on active duty for the U.S. Air Force. He’s had many positions including Chief of the Air Force Wounded Warrior Program, Chief of Behavioral Health and Suicide Prevention for the Air National Guard, and Chief of Air

Professionals who understand and appreciate veterans’ war experiences while assisting them and their families toward a successful post-war adjustment in or near their community. Centers in Utah: Salt Lake area, Provo, Ogden and St. George. 801–266–1499 (SLC) saltlakecity.va.gov/vet_centers VA SALT LAKE CITY HEALTH CARE SYSTEM Mental health services provide consultation, evaluatio, and treatment for a variety of issues that can impact emotional well-being. For more information on the PTSD Walk-In Clinic or any other mental health services provided contact Dr. Allen, PTSD Clinical Team Coordinator at 801-582-1565, Ext. 2390. saltlakecity.va.gov/services/Mental_ Health.asp NAMI UTAH: HOMEFRONT A free, six-session program for families, caregivers and friends of military members and vets with mental health conditions. Learn more about classes in Utah. 801–323–9900, namiut.org

SHOW YOUR SUPPORT FOR VETERANS & SERVICEMEMBERS Visit VeteransCrisisLine.net Dial 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1 Text to 838255 february


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Then & Now W hen it comes to “the lessons of histor y” there are doubtless many things w e could lear n. Some are more use ful to the w ell-meaning of societ y than others. VALOR looks at the past to see how the present can shape our future. How w e embrace our lessons shapes our own stor ies.

WHO TELLS YOUR STORY? AN ARRAY OF STORYTELLING WAYS by Emily Johnson for valor m aga z i n e


he compulsion to write, to document and to detail is not unique to any person or period of time. Some of us wish to add our mark to history, some intend to provide insight to a moment in time, and others are hoping to offer a glimpse into their ways of life and share that with future generations. As humans, we grapple with big questions about our place in history: Who owns history? Who gets to be in charge of how history will be told? When we are gone, will someone tell our story for us, and will we like what they have to say? There are many ways to tell a single story. The exhibition, “Who Tells Your Story?” features just a few of the ways in which Utahns have chosen to document their experiences. The people of Utah have spent countless hours compiling their stories in many ways throughout history. One of the first things that comes to mind when considering how people document their lives might be written records. Letters, journals and other manuscripts are certainly an important part of how people have left an accounting of their lives and experiences.

PEN TO PAPER Mot Yatabe and Mitsie Ozeki met inside the Topaz Internment Camp near Delta, Utah. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 on Feb. 19, 1942. It gave the United States military broad powers to ban American citizens with Japanese heritage from “military zones” in a 50- to 60-mile-wide region along the nation’s Pacific coast. Japanese34

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Americans living in these zones were forcibly removed from their homes and incarcerated in internment camps. While he was living in Topaz, Mot Yatabe, a young Nisei (second-generation Japanese-American immigrant) man, was drafted into the U.S. Army. He wrote often to Mitsie, who was still living in the Topaz Internment Camp, while he was away. She saved many of his letters and postcards. In his letters, Mot would write about his life during training, and about how much he missed her while he was gone. Mot was not able to preserve his letters from Mitsie while he was stationed in Japan. What we have now is half of a conversation—the things Mot wrote to Mitsie. These letters provide a glimpse into the life of a Japanese-American soldier during World War II. They are one way Mot recorded his experiences, not only for Mitsie to read, but for those of us who came after.

FOLLOWING THREADS When we consider that writing on paper is just one way people communicate their histories and legacies to one another, we are left with a much wider array of objects that can be considered “records.” Some cultural art forms are also methods of storytelling or ways to document collective experiences. During the Vietnam War, the Hmong were recruited in large numbers by the American CIA as part of the “Secret War” that extended into Laos. After the Vietnam War ended, february


"Great Hunt Panel" c . 800-1300 a . d . ( replica on display ) The Great Hunt Panel is a famous Fremont-period petroglyph from Utah’s Nine Mile Canyon. A petroglyph is an image etched into a rock face. Petroglyphs often use powerful symbols from nature that may have conveyed cultural, religious, ceremonial or historical meaning. While it can be difficult to decipher the messages and meanings of some petroglyphs, they are important records and documents and deserve respect as markers of those who came before us. Question: If you needed to tell a story using symbols and images, what things might you include? "Motoki Yatabe, Letters to Mitsue Ozeki" 1945 “Mot” Yatabe and “Mitsie” Ozeki met and fell in love inside the Topaz Internment Camp. Mot was drafted into the U.S. Army. He wrote frequently to Mitsie, telling her about his life during training and about how much he missed her while he was away. Mitsie saved many of his letters and postcards. He was not able to preserve his letters. What we have now is half of a conversation—the things Mot wrote to Mitsie,some while she was still living inside the camp. Question: Have you ever had a pen pal?



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the Hmong were persecuted for their participation on the side of the United States. They were forced from their homes and into refugee camps. After spending several years in refugee camps in Thailand, many immigrated to America, some to Utah. The Hmong are particularly well known for their textile work called pa ntao, or “flower cloth.” Appliqué, which are pieces of fabric sewn to larger pieces to form designs and pictures; reverse appliqué, which is the cutting away of layered fabric to reveal patterns underneath; and embroidery techniques characterize this beautiful handwork which is traditionally done on cotton or hemp cloth with silk thread. In the 19th century, pa ntao became an important form of documentation, as the Hmong language was threatened by Chinese rulers who sought to extinguish it.

Sister of Ge Lo, “Hmong 100 Year Story Cloth” 1988 ( detail of story cloth ) During the Vietnam War, the Hmong were recruited in large numbers by the American CIA as part of the “Secret War” that extended into Laos. After the war, the Hmong were persecuted for their participation on the side of the U.S. They were forced into refugee camps. Many immigrated to the United States and some to Utah. Story cloths are a more modern product and many were produced with the express intent of being sold, to tell people’s life stories, and the stories of the Hmong collective experience. Question: Have you ever told a story without words, in a drawing or painting? What event in your life would you like to express in an artwork?

Some people mistakenly assume that the Hmong have long used story cloths to record and pass along their legends and histories through family groups. In fact, story cloths are a modern product, born out of the Hmong refugee camps in Thailand. Story cloths were often produced with the express intent of being sold, as well as to tell people’s life stories and stories of the collective Hmong experience.

IN ‘REEL’ TIME Storytelling and documenting have evolved over time with the emergence of new technologies. We now share our lives and our stories with our friends and families over the Internet, through our phones, in photos, and in videos. Spy Hop’s film class, REEL Stories, engages Utah students between the ages of 15-19 in creating five-minute documentary films that tell their stories to the world. Students write, direct and edit their films through the program, and they focus their efforts on exploring a topic or story that is important to their lives. The videos document and record stories that are important to the lives of the filmmakers that they want to share with the world. Using film as a document to record news and stories is as old as the medium itself. As film technology has improved, it has allowed artists, historians and other documentarians to record their experiences and the events unfolding around them. Now that many people can use their cell phones as recording devices, more film footage is being produced and shared than ever before. Film is used as a direct, first-person vantage from which to tell our stories.

Kerri Buxton, “Shadow Ewers” 1991 The artist based these slab-built vessel forms on the journals she has kept throughout her life. Like the journals, these works are containers for her experiences, and they help her document details of her daily life and what motivates her to write—the bad and the good. This piece inspires us to think about what organic or solid forms our experiences and the records of our experiences might take. Question: How can we tell our stories in a way that will balance the good and the bad?


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Utah Arts and Museums presents “Who Tells Your Story?”an exhibition of Utah stories through June. To see more objects, and additional multimedia stories of Utahns, visit the exhibition on the fourth floor gallery of the Utah State Capitol. To access online content, including the exhibition audio guide, visit newnationproject.utah.gov/whotellsyourstory. This exhibition was curated by Emily Johnson on behalf of the Utah Department of Heritage and Arts. Currently Emily is the Museums Services Specialist, providing outreach and consultation to museums and museum professionals across Utah. She was worked with the Department of Heritage and Arts, Division of Arts and Museums for six years. february


Remembering WWI LEARNING ABOUT THE GREAT WAR AND UTAH’S ROLE The Utah World War I Commission is a one-time legislative grant under the direction of Utah Division of State History and Utah Department of Veterans and Military Affairs. The commission strives to recognize both the nation’s and state’s participation in the Great War, sacrifices Utahns made for the war effort, and the centennial commemoration of WWI.

Orem-based sculptor Larry Transfield in his home studio with the original clay models ( inset ) of his design selected for the U.S. Mint’s commemorative World War I coin. ung photo

Winning the coin toss


culptor LeRoy Transfield won the U. S. Mint’s World War I Centennial Silver Dollar competition. The coin pays homage to the 100 year anniversary since the end of WWI. Orem-based Transfield said of his selection, “I find it both surprising and impressive, since I’ve never before designed a coin.” A New Zealand native, Transfield cites his own family history as a great influence in his life and for instilling a deep passion for history and the WWI era. Two of his uncles served in the great war in the New Zealand Expeditionary Force Native Contingent. Transfield immigrated to the U.S. through education and marriage to his wife, Kelly. The obverse side of the coin titled “Soldier’s Charge” features a war-weary soldier holding a rifle. Transfield described the soldier: “I made his nose like it might’ve been broken. I wanted to give him a rugged looking face … I wanted that feeling of combat.”

The reserve side, titled “Poppies in the Wire,” displays poppy blossoms entwined in barbed wire. Transfield said the poem, “In Flanders’ Fields” by John McCrae was key in his inspiration. Transfield included barbed wire to juxtapose the flower’s delicacy, representing the war-torn fields of Europe. All together, Transfield has created a historical emblem with powerful and striking imagery. The limited-run proof silver dollar is being sold now at usmint.gov.


WORLD WAR I HISTORY SYMPOSIUM Weber State University honors students will present their own research on the war. Audience members can learn about all aspects of the conflict from the war’s conduct and consequences. Free, open to the public. Hetzel-Hoellein Room, 3rd Floor, WSU’s Stewart Library, Ogden, 12 to 5 p.m. Tuesday. Professor Branden Little, jblittle@weber.edu

The goals of the commission are to identify World War I memorials and monuments throughout the state; to educate Utahns, especially students, about this period in our history; and to develop awareness throughout the state of the impacts of the war. The commission is offering grants to encourage Utahns to recognize the impact of WWI in their communities. Visit the WWI Commission’s website, heritage.utah.gov/history/wwi to apply for grants. The process is easy. You include the date, requesting organization, contact information, project description, timeline, publicizing, the historic merit of the project and budget. To commemorate monuments and memorials of WWI from around the state, the commission has researched and created a booklet titled “Utah’s World War I Monuments” that highlights six WWI monuments, with an indepth walk through of Memory Grove just east of the Utah State Capitol. The booklet is available in digital form. Questions? Contact the WWI Commission at vjacobson@utah. gov —VALeRie JACObSOn FOR VALOR

n DISCOVER MORE about Utah and World War I, including upcoming events, through the Utah World War I Commission at heritage.utah.gov/history/wwi february


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Our staff of trained professionals stand ready to assist you in many ways, such as: • Outreach Activities - Help with VA Pension, and Aid & Attendance - Service Connected Disability Claims • Job Fairs - Getting you employed, skills workshops, etc. • etc. • • The Homeless Veterans Stand-Down - Providing food, shelter, and clothing The Utah Department of Veterans and Military Affairs is here to serve you. We operate: • The Utah Veterans Cemetery and Memorial Park • Four Veterans Homes from Ogden to St. George • The State Approving Agency for Veterans Education Utah Department of Veterans and Military Affairs 550 Foothill Drive, Suite 150 Salt Lake City, Utah 84113 Phone: 801-326-2372 Email: veterans@utah.gov www.veterans.utah.gov

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Utah Valor Magazine February 2018  

Utah Valor Magazine February 2018  

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