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June/July 2013 Issue 4

The Joker Journal

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HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Bloomington National Guard Armory Commander: CPT Charles Beck First Sergeant: 1SG Rick Lindner Unit Address: 3300 West 98th St. Bloomington, MN 55431 Unit Telephone: (651) 268-8100

FRG Leadership

Hello, HHC Soldiers and Families.

Leader – Jolene Lindner jlindner@bsmwireless.com (800) 646-9614 x 5

It may have taken awhile, but it appears spring has finally arrived in Minnesota – and what a spring it’s been for our Soldiers. After a snowy drill in April and a wet and stormy drill in May, we’re guessing they are probably ready for summer. We know we are! We do hope you are enjoying the warmer weather.

Co-Leader – Molly Andersen molly.reuter@gmail.com (903) 920-4366

With the warmer weather come plenty of fun outdoor activities for you and your family. Make sure to check out the Upcoming Events and Important Dates section in the newsletter.

Treasurer – Karen Langer karenlanger@hotmail.com (651) 334-9929

Also, the FRG has been busy fundraising the past couple of months. We’ve included an update in the newsletter, as well as how to get your hands on a fun Joker Company t-shirt. Money raised will help offset the cost of this year’s holiday party. The FRG would love your support.

Secretary – Andrea Curley andreacurley13@gmail.com (612) 751-0933

Thanks, and have a great couple of months! Your FRG Leadership Team, Jolene, Molly, Karen and Andrea

In This Issue: Pages 2-3: Upcoming Events and Important Dates Page 4: FRG Fundraising Update Page 4: FRG T-Shirt Fundraiser Page 5: Virtual Family Readiness Group Website Transition Page 5: Deals, Discounts and Family Resources Pages 6-7: HHC BSTB Family of the Month – “The Chaffees” Page 7: In the News Page 8: Meet the New Battalion Commander Page 9: Meet the New Battalion Chaplain Page 10: Note from the Commander Page 10: How to Contact the FRG & Stay Connected


The Joker Journal

June/July 2013 Issue 4

HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Upcoming Events and Important Dates 9th Annual Lucky Libby Muskie Fishing Event Sunday, June 9: 6:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Lake Minnetonka Boats, guides and fishing equipment will be provided free of charge to assist our vets in catching the fish of a lifetime! Fishing will start at Mound City Park. After fishing, all participants will enjoy a complimentary noon barbecue. The veteran who catches the longest Muskie will receive a trip to Spring Bay Resort on Lake Vermilion. To participate or become a sponsor, contact Libby or Tim Hoene at 763755-2484 or 763-370-3802 or email elizabethlhoene@yahoo.com.

Take a Vet Fishing Sunday, June 9: 7:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Babcock Park – McFarland, WI Each veteran who participates in the event will be recognized with gifts, giveaways and raffle prizes after a morning of fishing. Click here for more details.

Night to Unite MMAF Fundraiser June 11-13 Plymouth Creek Athletic Club The fundraiser – offered at no cost – is a tennis clinic for children ages 5 to 15 and adults of all skill levels. Event includes free food, chair massage and a raffle and silent auction. Registration starts at 10 a.m. daily. Proceeds will benefit the Minnesotans' Military Appreciation Fund. See the attached flyer for more information.

Trap & Skeet Competition for Veterans Saturday, June 22: 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Minneapolis Gun Club Competition for military veterans includes two boxes of shells, one round of trap and more for just $10.00. See attached flyer for more information.

HHC 1/34 BSTB Drill Saturday, June 22 and Sunday, June 23 Bloomington Armory

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June/July 2013 Issue 4

The Joker Journal HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Weekend Camp for Military Moms and their Children July 5-7 Kiwanis Scout Camp, Marine on St. Croix During this special weekend of fun – held to strengthen the relationship between military mothers and their children ages 6-11 – many opportunities will be available for family bonding, as well as for the military women to share their experiences with each other and the group. See the attached flyer for more details.

Living and Learning Series for Women Veterans Tuesday, July 9 @ 5:00 p.m. The League of Catholic Women, Minneapolis This is the third "Inner Healing” meeting, which is a four-part series focusing on topics important to women who have served in the military. We’ve attached a flyer with additional information and upcoming dates.

Ben Kopp Memorial Ride Friday, July 12 and Saturday, July 13 Bogarts Place, Apple Valley Bogarts Place in Apple Valley is hosting a memorial ride in honor of Ben Kopp, U.S. Army Ranger. Preregistration, along with a silent auction and Italian style buffet, will be held on Friday night followed by a memorial ride on Saturday.

HHC 1/34 BSTB Drill Saturday, July 20 and Sunday, July 21 Bloomington Armory

Tee it Up for the Kids Thursday, July 25: Time TBD Majestic Oaks, Ham Lake Last year's event raised $13,700 for the Minnesota National Guard Youth Camp. Organizers are looking for golfers, sponsors and participants to make this year's event another success. Golf package, costing $89, includes dinner, silent auction, raffles and more. Registration for the shotgun tournament begins at 10 a.m. See attached flyer for additional details. SAVE THE DATE: The local VFW near Little Falls, MN is hosting a picnic for families at Camp Ripley on Saturday, August 10th. This is during Annual Training. Look for more details in our August newsletter.

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June/July 2013 Issue 4

The Joker Journal HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

FRG Fundraising Update The FRG has been busy fundraising over the past couple of months. Our first fundraiser took place on Friday, April 19th during drill at Camp Ripley. The FRG met the Soldiers arriving by bus and sold pizza and pop for $3.00. In the end, we raised more than $200. Then, on Friday, May 17th and Saturday, May 18th, the FRG headed back up to Camp Ripley and sold brats, hamburgers and pop to the Soldiers while they were on the range during May Drill. We’re told it was a nice change from the MREs they typically eat. The meal, which cost $5.00, came with a raffle ticket to be included in a drawing for the chance to win a Jacuzzi suite at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Bloomington. The FRG was able to raise around $400. Thank you to all the Soldiers who supported the FRG. We’ll be back up to sell food at Annual Training in August. And a special thanks to SSG Brian Chaffee for helping with the pizza fundraiser and Lance Howard for allowing us to use his fantastic grill and then manning it during May Drill.

FRG T-Shirt Fundraiser

The FRG is selling unit t-shirts to Soldiers and their family members. We will be taking orders (along with payment) at June and July Drills, so let your Soldier know if you are interested in a t-shirt. See the sizes and prices below. Those who order a t-shirt in June will get it at July Drill; July orders will be fulfilled at Annual Training in August. Along with drill, we will be taking orders at the family picnic at Camp Ripley on Saturday, August 10th and the unit family picnic on Sunday, September 22nd, so plenty of opportunities to get a t-shirt! Adult: Small, Medium, Large & XL - $15.00 2XL and 3XL - $16.50

Youth: Small, Medium & Large - $15.00

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June/July 2013 Issue 4

The Joker Journal HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Virtual Family Readiness Group Website Transition All battalion level Virtual Family Readiness Group (vFRG) websites have now been discontinued. The decision has been made to transition from the battalion vFRG sites to a single brigade level vFRG site for all units within the 1/34 Armored Brigade Combat Team (1/34 ABCT). Each battalion, (for example; the BSTB) will have a page within the new brigade site and both unit and FRG Leadership contact information will be listed within those pages. The vFRG website will also house current and past FRG newsletters, as well as links to resources for Soldiers and families. Register for the new 1/34 ABCT vFRG website today by visiting www.armyfrg.org and following the attached directions. Please notify Molly Andersen, FRG Co-Leader, if you have any issues.

Deals, Discounts & Family Resources Hillsong United – Monday, June 17 at 7:00 p.m. Use the military offer to save $4 on regularly-priced tickets to see the worship band perform its latest released album, Zion. See the attached flyer for ticket information.

American Idol Live – Tuesday, July 2, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. Military members save $10 to get up close and personal with American Idol Season 12 finalists at the Target Center. See the attached flyer for additional information.

Complimentary Orthopedic and Neurological Examination Dr. Jason Fredericks, a supporter of Beyond the Yellow Ribbon – Bloomington, is offering discounts to all military personnel. Click here to get your complimentary orthopedic and neurological examination valued at $340.

For more deals, discounts and family resources check out the June Soldier Family Toolkit attached here.

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June/July 2013 Issue 4

The Joker Journal HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

HHC BSTB Family of the Month This month, we are featuring SSG Jen Chaffee and her family. A big thank you to the Chaffees for sharing their story with the FRG! Are you willing to be featured in an upcoming newsletter? Email Molly Andersen, FRG Co-Leader, at molly.reuter@gmail.com. 1. Soldier’s name and rank: SSG Jeanette (Jen) Chaffee 2. Spouse/significant other’s name: Brian Chaffee 3. Children’s names and ages: Camden O’Malley: 8-years-old (Stepson) Madison Chaffee: 2-years-old 4. Soldier’s branch/MOS and duty position: 92F and Transportation Section Chief 5. Soldier’s civilian/full-time job: Resilience, Risk Reduction and Suicide Prevention NCOIC 6. Military experience and history. I have been in the Minnesota National Guard for 11 years this May. 9/11 happened my senior year of high school. I had plans of attending Minnesota State University, but instead I felt the need to do my part for my country, so I joined the Guard right before graduation and then left for basic training instead of college. I have deployed twice – once in 2004 with A Co 434th MSB, and then right after completing my 90-day reintegration in 2005 I volunteered to deploy again and was attached to HHC 1/34th BSTB for the 22-month deployment to Iraq. I have been in the following units: A Co 134th FSB, A Co 434th MSB, A Co 134th BSB, and HHC 1/34th BSTB. I was attached to HHC 1/34th BSTB in March 2009. I was promoted into the unit in 2009 at which time I was given the opportunity to mentor and lead the Soldiers in the transportation section by becoming the transportation section chief. 7. About your family. My husband and I met and began dating at Camp Shelby in the spring of 2006 when we were mobilizing for deployment. Our first “real” first date was not until Aug 2007 when we came home from deployment. We have been married for five years. My husband also works full-time in the Minnesota National Guard. He works up at Camp Ripley as one of the PTAE instructors. Camden has just started his first year of baseball and is enjoying it so far. He also likes to play soccer and football.

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June/July 2013 Issue 4

The Joker Journal HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Madison enjoys watching her brother play baseball and her cousins play hockey. Her papa is grooming her to be a left handed softball pitcher when she is old enough to play. During the summer months we try to spend as much time outside as possible. We enjoy taking the boat out and going fishing and tubing. When the water is warm enough we can’t wait to get Madison out of the lake. We spend countless hours outside throwing tennis balls to our two dogs. Last year, we bought a hobby farm so most of our time is spent developing our property the way we want for our garden and future livestock. 8. Family support. There have been countless hours the grandparents have watched Madison and the dogs because we both have had drill, AT or other missions to accomplish. My siblings have also been extra helpful with doing things to take care of our house and chickens whenever we have needed to be gone for an extended period of time. I owe a huge part of my success in the military to the support my husband and other family members have given me.

In the News Camp Ripley Unveils Drone Training Facility KSTP.com – Watch/read the entire story here. The Minnesota National Guard recently unveiled a new facility to better train troops on how to use drones. The Camp Ripley Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Operation Facility grand opening took place on Friday, May 17, 2013. The more than three-million dollar facility houses nearly 50 unmanned aircraft systems. Three of those are the sophisticated Shadow Systems used during operations in Afghanistan. The facility also includes a simulation training room and library.

Minnesota National Guard Staff Faces Sequester Furloughs Minneapolis Star Tribune – Read the entire story here. Due to Department of Defense sequestration budget cuts, more than 1,100 Minnesota National Guard technicians will be forced to take unpaid time off work. The furloughs, scheduled to begin July 15 and stretch through the end of September, will amount to a 20 percent pay cut during the period. Lt. Col. Jon Lovald, Minnesota National Guard’s director of Human Resources, told the Star Tribune that despite the furloughs, Minnesota Soldiers and Airmen remain ready to respond in the event of a state and federal emergency.

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The Joker Journal

June/July 2013 Issue 4

HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Meet the New Battalion Commander LTC Stephen Schemenauer Families of the BSTB, As many of you know, I assumed command of the Battalion on March 15, 2103. I wanted to take this opportunity to introduce myself. I am an Attorney with the law firm of Leonard, Street and Deinard in Minneapolis. My wife Jennifer and I have been married for nearly 17 years. Our 11year-old daughter, Savannah, is the reigning Little Miss Woodbury. I have served in the Army for almost 22 years, enlisting in 1991 as a Combat Engineer in the Army Reserve. I attended R.O.T.C at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse and received a Regular Army commission in 1996 as a Military Intelligence Officer. I spent four years on active duty doing strategiclevel intelligence in England and then joined the Iowa Army National Guard. I served as the Assistant Brigade S-2 for the 2nd Brigade Combat Team for a year and then as the Alpha Company Commander for the 1-168 Infantry for five years - a year of which was spent deployed to Afghanistan. After returning from the deployment, I transferred to the Minnesota Army National Guard, where I have served as a G-2 Operations Officer, the S-2 for the 1st Brigade Combat Team, the ACE Chief for the Division G-2’s deployment to Iraq and most recently, the G-2 (Chief of Intelligence/Assistant Chief of Staff) for the 34th Infantry Division. Being no stranger to deployments, I understand the importance of family support and the role of the Family Readiness Group (FRG), both in peacetime and in war. Although the operations tempo is decreasing, the FRG will continue to have an important role bridging the gap between the units and our families, so please continue to support your company FRGs. I understand that service in today’s Army requires great sacrifice from both Soldiers and their families, and we simply could not accomplish our mission without you. For that, I thank you. I am excited about this new opportunity, and I promise that I will do my best to serve you and the great Soldiers of this Battalion. In the interim, if there is anything I can do for you, please do not hesitate to contact me – my door (and inbox) is always open. Until next time . . . LTC Schemenauer (“Wild 6”)

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The Joker Journal

June/July 2013 Issue 4

HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Meet the New Battalion Chaplain Chaplain Michael Creagan

I am pleased to introduce myself to each one of you through The Joker Journal. My name is Chaplain Michael Creagan. I was assigned as the battalion chaplain for the 1/34 BSTB just two months ago. My military career is fairly short as I was just commissioned on 28 FEB 2013. I was ordained as a Roman Catholic Priest 16-years-ago. I have been involved in parish and school work since ordination. Currently, I am serving as the pastor of St. Joseph Parish in West St. Paul. Our parish has around 1,900 families and a school with around 475 students in grades pre-school through 8th grade. My past assignments have included Sacred Heart in Robbinsdale and St. Michael/St. Mary in Stillwater. I was born in Japan as my father was serving in the U.S. Air Force at the time. (Yes, my family did ask some questions of why I joined the Army!) While parish life and military life keep me busy, I do enjoy spending time with family and friends, fishing once in a while and traveling. I am honored to be assigned to serve the men and women of the 1/34 BSTB and their families. While I have the skills to assist you in religious support, I will need your help in teaching me how to be a good Soldier! I look forward to meeting you in the months ahead. Feel free to contact me if I can ever be of assistance. The chaplain corps was founded by General George Washington in 1775. Pray for me that I can serve you as the men and women of this corps have served over the last 238 years. Pro Deo et Patria CH (CPT) Michael Creagan 1/34 BSTB Battalion Chaplain Mobile: (651) 470-2054

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The Joker Journal

June/July 2013 Issue 4

HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

Note from the Commander Greetings HHC BSTB Family, Let me begin my comments this month by again singing the praises of our Family Readiness Group. During the past two months our FRG members, and other family volunteers, have donated their time and resources to support fundraising efforts during unit drill at Camp Ripley. I want to personally thank everyone involved for providing our Soldiers with great food while furthering our efforts to raise money for future events. Moving into June and July the unit is focused on preparation for Annual Training in August. During these months equipment will be inventoried, inspected, loaded and otherwise prepared for our primetime training event of the year. Planning and preparation is critical to the execution of a successful Annual Training period. After the long cold winter I suspect everyone is now enjoying spring/summer activities. We consistently encourage Soldiers (and families) to have fun but not at the expense of safety. Please be safety conscious in everything you do and remember, sometimes it’s the ‘other person’ that you need to be most concerned about! -

CPT Beck

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June/July 2013 Issue 4

The Joker Journal

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HHC 1/34 Brigade Special Troops Battalion

How to Contact the HHC FRG The HHC 1/34 BSTB FRG: jlindner@bsmwireless.com Jolene Lindner – Leader jlindner@bsmwireless.com (800)-646-9614 x 5 Molly Andersen – Co-Leader molly.reuter@gmail.com (903) 920-4366 A Network of Support The best way to reach us is through jlindner@bsmwireless.com, but you can always call Jolene or Molly at the numbers above. Also, the Family Assistance Center (FAC) exists to help Families in a number of ways. You can reach the Brooklyn Park FAC Coordinator at (651) 282-4055 or the 934th Air Lift Wing (Minneapolis) FAC Coordinator at (612) 713-1518. For a list of FACs near you, click here. We want to be here for as many Family members/loved ones of Soldiers as we can, but we can’t do that without your help. If you know someone who might be interested in the FRG, please forward them our contact information. Your Family Readiness Group We want the FRG to be your FRG, meaning we want your input. If there is something you would like us to do or need, let us know.

Stay Connected

Providing us with your address, phone number, and Soldier(s)’ name for our records is confidential and voluntary, but greatly assists us in communicating with you. Thanks for your support!

http://www.facebook.com/134BSTB?fref=ts

www.btyr.org https://www.facebook.com/BeyondTheYellowRibbon https://twitter.com/BTYRmn

http://www.facebook.com/MinnesotaNationalGuard https://twitter.com/MNNationalGuard

http://www.facebook.com/minnesotaredbulls http://www.youtube.com/MinnesotaRedBulls http://www.twitter.com/MnRedBulls http://www.flickr.com/photos/minnesotaredbulls

June 2013 frg newsletter  
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