Page 1



Volume 56

Number 1

Spring 2015

WRITE TO CONGRESS.................. 11



BEST WARRIOR.......................... 29

2015 NGAT Minuteman Award Recipient, LTC Justin Perryman

2015–16 Board of Directors President..................................................................Daniel Quick President-Elect.......................................................... Kenn White Vice-President........................................................... Tony Carter Secretary-Treasurer.................................................... Anita Blue

HQ, TXMF................................................................Mark Weedon ARNG Troops...........................................................Tyra Swanson 36th ID....................................................................Mike Wallace 72nd IBCT.........................................................Brian Hildebrand 72nd IBCT........................................................... Richard Sublett 56th IBCT.........................................................................Jet Hays 56th IBCT.....................................................................Mark Horn 36th Sustainment Bde................................. Murphy McCardell 36th CAB......................................................................Bob Roark 176th Engr Bde....................................................Calvin Jenkins 71st BfSB.................................................................Patrick Harty 136th CSB (ME)..................................................... John Crawson HQ, TANG............................................................ Michael Selheim 149th FW............................................................Albert Cardenas 147th RW............................................................... Leonor Milton 136th AW.................................................................... Doug Clark TX State Guard Rep..................................... Kristopher Krueger Retired Rep - Region I...........................................Priscilla Leger Retired Rep - Region II...........................................Jerry Horsley Retired Rep - Region III.......................................Randy Ransom Family Readiness Rep...........................................Miguel Torres Executive Director.................................................... Ray Lindner

NEWScontents 4 5 6/7 8 10/12 13 14/15 16 17 19 20/21 22 24/25 26 27 28 29 30/31 33 34 36/37 38 40

President's Report Members Spotlight Board of Directors Deployments Legislative Update Leadership Changes NGAT Conference Photos NGAT Awards Conference Survey Comments Scholarship Winners NGAT 2015 Conference Winners Membership Update Around the World with the Guard EANGUS/NGAUS TXARNG Honorary Member Soldier/Airmen of the Year Best Warrior Competition Corporate Members & Sponsors Retirees 1136th Pathfinder Reunion Around Texas with the Guard TAPS/Corporate Members & Sponsors NGAT Planning Calendar

Editor............................................Theresa Billeck-Zuniga Copy Editor...................................................Laura Bianco Graphic Designer..........................................Kathy White Publisher.............................. Aus-Tex Printing & Mailing



3706 Crawford Ave. Austin, TX 78731

NGAT EMAIL (512) 454-7300 1-800-252-NGAT (6428)

ON THE COVER (left side photos from top to bottom): NGAT CONFERENCE PHOTOS Two life-sized Rock'em Sock'em Robots square off in the 36 ID HHBN Hospitality Room. (Photo by MSG Daniel Griego) TXARNG Honorary member Maj Gen John F. Nichols, the adjutant general of Texas, right, talks with Rowan Windham, left, following Windham's honorary enlistment ceremony into the Texas Army National Guard at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas. (Photo by SFC Malcolm McClendon) Best Warrior TSgt Matthew Renteria prepares to navigate through unfamiliar terrain before dawn as part of the Texas Military Forces’ Joint Best Warrior Competition held at Camp Swift near Bastrop, Texas, 5-7 Feb. 2015. The event tests the mental and physical proficiencies of the participants through various challenges. (Photo by SGT Praxedis Pineda) Right Side Photo: LTC Justin Perryman was named the 2015 Minuteman Award Recipient (Photo by MSG Daniel Griego) NGAT NEWS (USPS 015-752) PUBLISHED QUARTERLY BY THE NATIONAL GUARD ASSOCIATION OF TEXAS, 3706 CRAWFORD AVENUE, AUSTIN, TEXAS 78731-6308 PERIODICALS POSTAGE PAID AT AUSTIN TX 78710 AND ADDITIONAL OFFICES POSTMASTER SEND ADDRESS CHANGES TO: NGAT NEWS, 3706 CRAWFORD AVENUE, AUSTIN, TEXAS 78731-6308 MEMBERS MAY EMAIL ADDRESS CHANGES TO: MEMBERSHIP@NGAT.ORG


President's R ep ort It is truly an honor to work with you as president of NGAT for the next two years. I’m excited about the organization and our mission in serving the Soldiers and Airmen of Texas. The year 2015 brings new challenges and also exciting opportunities. As we wrestle with the realities of fiscal limitations throughout the military, we must not look at how things were over the past 14 years since 9/11, but where we are and where we need to go as an organization. Where We Are: Our current financial situation is steady (though somewhat precarious) with relatively consistent income, conservative spending practices, and valueable land and facilities which provide options for future growth. The main risk to NGAT is unacceptably low membership for both the State and National associations. Membership is linked directly to association funds, and stagnating membership reduces our ability to fund legislative efforts, while decreasing our projected support for Service Member and family activities. Where We Need to Go: To address this membership concern, I propose the following goals for NGAT. First, NGAT membership needs to become the norm for our Airmen and Soldiers, not the exception. By the summer of 2016, I believe we can enroll 50% of the Texas National Guard into our membership program. Ambitious? Yes, but achievable with your help and support. Second, we need to simultaneously increase membership in our national organizations, NGAUS and EANGUS. I feel we can quickly double our membership by challenging each current member to recruit one new member before this year’s national conferences. Finally, I want to drastically increase the attendance at our NGAT conference next year. Conference attendance is about fellowship and building camaraderie throughout the state. It is a chance to build a single vision for the Texas Military Forces and create excitement in what tomorrow holds. Many of you will soon hear from board members who will ask for your support and your ideas to reach these initial goals. I will also publish unit membership numbers to reinforce initiatives by leaders throughout the Texas Military Forces. Thank you for your willingness to help, and look forward to seeing a dramatic growth in our membership numbers over the next six months. I appreciate all that you do and the sacrifices you and your family regularly make for Texas and our nation.

Daniel Quick COL, TXARNG NGAT President

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NGAT PRESIDENT'S AWARD Incoming NGAT President COL Daniel Quick (left) presents outgoing NGAT President CMSgt Chuck Chavers with the NGAT President’s Award. CMSgt Chavers has served on the NGAT board of directors since 2007 and served as NGAT Vice President and President-Elect before assuming the position of President in 2012. 

The NGAT board of directors would like to thank the NGAT staff and their support team of volunteers who assisted with this year's NGAT conference. A lot of work goes on long before the conference and behind the scenes at the conference that attendees never see, and we want to thank them for all their hard work. 




VOTING SFC Paula DaigleHutchins (left) and CW4 Terri Marshall (right) count ballots during voting at the NGAT conference business session. It’s been a long time since the association has had a good race for leadership positions on the NGAT board of directors. This year we had three candidates running for the position of President-Elect, and it was a great opportunity to see our delegate voting system in action. (Photo by MSG Daniel Griego) 

BOWLING CHAMPS At the 2014 EANGUS conference, the “Texas In The Gutter” bowling team was the overall tournament winner at the national conference; however, they never received their awards. During the awards' ceremony at the NGAT conference, MSG Larry Odem, EANGUS Area IV Director, presented the Texas team and NGAT Executive Director Ray Lindner with their trophies. Pictured left to right are MSG Larry Odem, CMSgt Charles Chavers, SSG Mireya Cruz, Ray Lindner, MSG (Ret) Theresa Billeck-Zuniga and SrA Kevin Hannah. Also on the team but not pictured are 1SG Allen Schonberg and SGT Mark Adame. (Photo by MSG Daniel Griego) 


This year's annual meeting of the NGAT Advisory Council, which is made up of NGAT past presidents, had some great ideas for improving the association. Pictured left to right are COL (Ret) Richard Harrison (79-80), COL (Ret) Edmond Komandosky (81-82), CSM (Ret) Billie Abernathy (83-84), CMSgt Charles Chavers (13-15), COL Michele Voorhees (09-11), LTC Justin Perryman (11-13) and CCMSgt (Ret) Bill Maginot (98-99). (Photo by MSG (Ret) Theresa Billeck-Zuniga (06-07)) 

GOVERNOR BREVETS FIRST FEMALE TEXAS ANG OFFICER TO GENERAL In one of his last official acts, former Gov. Rick Perry commissioned the first female Texas Air National Guard officer as a brevet brigadier general in Austin, Texas, effective Dec. 31, 2014. Retired Col Constance C. McNabb of Montgomery, Texas was presented with the general officer commission by Maj Gen Kenneth W. Wisian, Deputy Adjutant General for Air and Commander of the Texas Air National Guard, in a ceremony at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas on Jan. 23, 2015. McNabb retired after more than 23 years of service as a member of the U.S. Air Force, Nebraska Air National Guard and Texas Air National Guard. She was first commissioned as a captain in the U.S. Air Force’s Biomedical Science Corps. A “Citizen-Airman,” McNabb is also a Texas licensed, graduate veterinarian. McNabb served a varied military career that included service as commander of the 149th Medical Group, a subordinate unit of the 149th Fighter Wing based at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, TXMF Joint Surgeon, and then Chief of the Joint Staff for the Texas Military Forces at Camp Mabry. Her career culminated with her service as the Air National Guard Assistant to the Surgeon General at Headquarters, 25th Air Force at JBSA-Lackland. The Texas Government Code authorizes the governor, upon recommendation of the adjutant general, to confer a brevet commission “for gallant conduct or meritorious military service.” The code allows for the governor to commission the officer to the next higher grade. In McNabb’s case, she was promoted from the rank of colonel to brigadier general in the National Guard of the State of Texas. The military brevet is a significant state honor that has been bestowed upon only a few members of the Guard. During his time in office, Perry issued only six brevets to active service members, according to the Texas Military Forces General Officer Management office. McNabb is the first female from the Texas Air Guard to receive this honor. Brevet Brig Gen McNabb is looking forward to continuing her service to the state of Texas as a member of the Texas State Guard, which is the volunteer component of the Texas Military Forces. Additionally, McNabb said she is excited to be enrolled in a graduate program at Texas A&M University’s Bush School of Government and Public Service, where she is seeking a graduate certificate in non-profit management. NGAT is proud to call Brevet Brig Gen Constance C. McNabb a NGAT Life Member.


Your New NGAT Executive Committee

COL Daniel Quick President

LTC Kenn White

CSM Tony Carter


Vice President

MSgt Anita Blue


NGAT Outgoing Directors

Thank You for Your Service!

CMSgt Charles Chavers President

CW4 Terri Marshall

CPT Ashley Bloom



SFC Michael Courade Joint Forces HQ

SGM Kenneth Henry 36th Infantry Division

Maj John Pollard 149th FW




CMSgt (Ret) Buck Allbright Retired Rep – Region 3

Incoming Directors

CSM Mark Weedon

CSM (Ret) Randy Ransom

Joint Forces HQ

Retired Rep - Region 3

LTC Tyra Swanson TXARNG

MSgt Albert Cardenas 149th FW

1st Lt Leonor Milton

LTC Mike Wallace

147th RW

36th Infantry Division

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TEXAS SIGNAL LEADERS PREPARE FOR DEPLOYMENT SFC Thomas C. Hardin, a member of the 136th Expeditionary Signal Battalion, exits a vehicle at the completion of vehicle rollover drills during the organization's Key Leader Pre-Mobilization Training March 23, 2015 at Camp Mabry in Bastrop, Texas. (Photo by MSG Daniel Griego)

Leadership from the 36th Infantry Division, MG Lester Simpson, COL (P) Richard Noriega and CSM John Sampa stopped by Austin's Bergstrom International Airport to talk to some of the 36th Infantry Division Soldiers who were leaving for El Salvador. Soldiers from the 2-149th General Support Aviation Battalion loaded up their UH-60 “Blackhawk” helicopters into an Air Force C-5 for the flight. They will be providing aviation support to the 367th Engineer Battalion in Beyond the Horizon, an annual humanitarian and civil assistance exercise in El Salvador. (Photo by MAJ Randy Stillinger)

The road to deployment is a long one for National Guard units, with months of preparatory training and administrative tasks to fulfill before the Department of Defense approves them for overseas service. The officers and noncommissioned officers of the 136th Expeditionary Signal Battalion got a head start on this process March 21-29 at Camp Swift with a specialized premobilization training for leaders. Twenty-four members of the Signal Battalion, which falls under the Texas National Guard’s Joint Task Force 136 (Maneuver Enhancement Brigade), trained for more than a week on warriors' skills including reacting to incoming fire, reacting to a vehicle rollover, grenade familiarization and others. The leaders on site performing this training included the battalion commander, staff officers, senior noncommissioned officers, and mission-essential personnel who will be able to help guide the main body of the organization through the same drill lanes in June.

TEXAS CAVALRYMEN BEGIN PEACEKEEPING MISSION IN THE SINAI Soldiers of the 1-112th CAV Rgmt board an aircraft to deploy to Egypt.

The cavalry has arrived and as their unit motto suggests, they are "Rarin to Go." Texas Army National Guard Soldiers from 1-112th Cavalry Regiment assumed command of the U.S. Army Security Battalion from the Fort Hood based 4th Squadron, 3rd Cavalry Regiment during a transfer-of-authority ceremony held on the Multinational Force and Observer’s South Camp in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt on 18 Feb. 2015. The ceremony marks the 60th rotation of U.S. Soldiers to deploy in support of the MFO’s peacekeeping mission and comes during a time when much of the world’s focus has shifted to the region. The Army National Guardsmen from Bryan, Texas will be responsible for the security of numerous remote outposts along the Sinai Peninsula as well as the Red Sea and will be looking to build upon the successes of their predecessors. The Texas Army National Guard will pick up where their active-duty battle buddies left off.

(Right) The Commander of the 36th Infantry Division, MG Lester Simpson speaks with Soldiers of the 1-112th CAV Rgmt prior to their departure to Egypt.




Their experience as trained Cavalry Scouts will be required in the manning of multiple response teams on both of the MFO’s North and South camps while accomplishing the overarching mission of observing and reporting compliance of the Camp David Accords Peace Treaty. To accomplish their mission, the Soldiers will have a lot of help along the way as the 1-112th CAV will work closely with service members from Australia, Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, France, Hungary, Italy, New Zealand, Norway, United Kingdom, Uruguay and the Republic of the Fiji Islands.


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Legislative Update FEDERAL


Most activity in Washington continues to be centered on force structure issues. We continue to support countering the Army's proposed cuts to Guard force structure and transfer of Guard combat aviation assets to the active force, but it appears that the Army is moving ahead with its aviation force restructuring plan (under the guise of modernization). Please be prepared to respond at short notice with a Write to Congress to prevent this from occurring. The problem is that the Administration appears to be ignoring the expressed will of Congress on this issue (to wait for a report from the Commission), so there is not much the Congress can do legislatively at present.

The regular session of the 84th Texas Legislature has been a busy one for NGAT. In addition to attending and monitoring committee sessions concerning Guard funding, we have been actively involved in tracking and shaping the legislation seeking to revamp the Hazlewood Act.

In February 2015, NGAT hosted a Congressional reception to reach out to our new Congressional members and their staffs, as well as our returning delegation and staffs. We will return to Washington, D.C. in early June in conjunction with a proposed visit by TXMF leadership to meet again with members and staff, as we host another legislative reception for the Texas delegation. During the Army and Air "State of the State" briefings to the National Guard Bureau, we once again will be sponsoring activities outside of the headquarters building to provide a more relaxed social setting for both parties to informally exchange views.

While we were expecting an attack on Hazlewood Act benefits by the universities this session, a decision by a federal judge in Houston in January 2015 placed the entire program in jeopardy by potentially expanding the benefits to all veterans in Texas. Most legislators agree that a modification in eligibility is required, as well as some restrictions on the legacy component (benefits that are allowed to be passed to dependents). The eligibility modification is a requirement for the eligible veteran to have been a Texas resident for eight years prior to using the benefits, in addition to have served for 180 days or more on active duty. The number of free semester hours will either remain at 150, or be reduced to 120. The legacy component will require the eligible veteran to have served at least a certain number of years (5-7) on active or reserve component duty to be eligible to pass the hours to dependents. The hours for both the veteran and the dependent would have to be used within 15 years of leaving the service, and the number of hours eligible to be passed to a dependent will likely be reduced to 120 (or even as low as 60). Neither chamber has voted on the committee versions (as of 3 May), but we expect both chambers to pass their versions and send the bills to a conference committee. While we are disappointed that there may be some reduction in legacy hours, on the whole we believe the resulting legislation will be an adequate response to the potential threat to the entire program. Please be prepared to respond to a Write to Congress (or Legislature) call for you to get your senator/representative to support an equitable solution. On 19 March NGAT hosted a reception at the state Capitol where the Texas Military Forces were able to showcase their forces and capabilities. The function was well attended, and many legislators and staff left with a better appreciation of the many missions and successes of our forces.

Texas State Sen. Donna Campbell recently paid a visit to the 149 Fighter Wing. She chairs the Texas Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs & Military Installations, and stopped by for a quick briefing about our missions and Citizen-Airmen. Pictured with her are Col Mike Mitchell (right), 149th FW Vice Commander, and CMSgt George Longoria. (Photo by 2nd Lt Phil Fountain)





WRITE TO CONGRESS. MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR THE GUARD. NGAT visits congressional offices to meet with lawmakers and their staff on a regular basis to advocate on behalf of force structure, equipment, and benefits needed by the National Guard. However, we can't do it all alone. We need you to contact your congressman and senators to voice your opinions and concerns on issues that affect National Guard careers and benefits for both active and retired members.


Visit the NGAT website today to write a letter to your representatives and senators and ask them to support the following issues: • Support any House or Senate legislation that executes the retirement recommendations within the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission Report (MCRMC). The MCRMC’s recommendation would allow retiring members of the National Guard, for the first time in nearly 70 years, the option to receive a portion of their retirement pay after 20 years of service in a variety of ways depending on individual needs and requirements. • Provide veteran status to members of the Reserve Component. • Request to authorize and appropriate $247.5 million for 15 additional UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters for the Army National Guard in the fiscal 2016 defense bills.

The commanding general of the 36th Infantry Division, MG Lester Simpson, spoke to the Defense and Veterans’ Affairs Committee of the Texas House of Representatives during a hearing March 12, 2015. MG Simpson was requested to speak on House Bill 923, which would create a special license plate that honors the division, the largest component of the Texas Army National Guard. The bill was introduced by State Representative Dan Flynn (HD-2), a 36th Infantry Division veteran who also serves as a colonel in the Texas State Guard. He is the chairman of both the House Committee on Pensions and the National Conference of State Legislators Defense Task Force.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (center) and Texas State Senator Donna Campbell stopped by a reception hosted by NGAT at the Texas State Capitol where the Texas Military Forces showcased their forces and capabilities. (Photo by Ray Lindner)

The idea for the license plate came during conversations between the congressman and veterans of the 36th as a way to honor veterans and members of the division who live in Texas, and also to provide a commemorative plate to those that live outside the state.


NGAT LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES NGAT continues to provide a concerned and committed voice in Washington and Austin for our National Guard soldiers and airmen, their families, and Guard retirees and veterans to ensure that they receive benefits for their service, including medical coverage, education, retirement, veterans advocacy, and employment opportunities. The politically charged atmosphere in Washington and the continued effects of sequestration and budget-cutting continues to challenge our Association as it attempts to secure new or expanded benefits while protecting existing benefits. In Austin, continued budget-cuts and attempts to erode or discontinue educational benefits also present a need to pay close attention to legislative activities during the biennial session. The current threat to Army Guard force structure remains serious although the Army's attempt to strip the Guard of its combat aviation assets has been temporarily thwarted. In this environment, our emphasis remains to avert and avoid any immediate threat to mission and force structure brought about in a move by the active force to use the Guard as a bill-payer. On the Air side, we support the component's attempt to modernize the fleet, attract a cyber mission, and even expand Air assets by taking new missions if available. We are committed to enabling the Adjutant General and the two components to do what is necessary to meet the daily evolving challenges. We ask our members to remain educated, involved, and ready to respond to any call for action that we send out; it is critical that we demonstrate wide-spread support to oppose military benefit changes that are inconsistent with service-career sacrifices.

In addition to supporting the federal and state initiatives of the Adjutant General, NGAT is pursuing the following priorities for our members:




TRICARE: Avert Medicare/TRICARE payment cut and fix statutory formula to improve access to care. Protect against disproportional increases in TRICARE fees. Provide TRICARE Prime coverage to all drilling Guard members.

Total Force GI Bill: Raise GI Bill educational benefit rates to cover at least the average cost of a public college education and allow accrual of benefits for reservists who serve multiple tours of active duty up to 36 months.

Pre-Tax Childcare Expenses: Allow Guard families to pay childcare expenses on a pretax basis

Pre-Tax TRICARE Payments: Allow uniformed services retiree beneficiaries, their family members and survivors to pay TRICARE enrollment fees and supplemental insurance premiums using pre-tax dollars.


Dental: Provide all Guardsmen coverage under the TRICARE Dental Program (TDP) including an annual dental examination at no cost to the member and full payment by the TDP of any dental treatment needed to bring the member into a Dental Class 1 or 2. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Assistance: Fully fund PTSD/TBI care and research initiatives. Partner with health care entities to seek funding for communitybased programs that mitigate, treat and help overcome the damage of service family posttraumatic stress disorder.

Early Retirement: Credit all post-9/11 active duty service toward Guard early retirement. Reduce the age a retired Guardsman can receive military retirement pay by one year for every two years served after 20 years. Duty Points: Remove the annual limit on inactive duty points that can be applied to retirement. Title 32 Benefits Parity: Eliminate the lack of benefits parity between duty performed under Title 10 (federal authority) and Title 32 (state authority) by allowing military service under Title 32 to be creditable for the same purposes as military service under Title 10.

Employment Program: Fund skill-building and employment programs for spouses and family members

OTHER Veteran Status: Secure veteran status for National Guard members entitled to reserve retirement pay. Employer Tax Credit: Authorize federal dollar-for-dollar tax credits to employers who make up negative salary differentials of their deployed Guard and Reserve employees. Provide employers a tax credit for compensation paid during the period employees are performing service as members of the Ready Reserve or the National Guard.




Association Tax Relief

Protect Hazelwood educational benefits for the service member through increased and expanded eligibility requirements.

Secure state property tax relief for the association as it currently exists for nationally chartered veteran organizations.



Texas Military Forces Leadership Changes

BG (TX) Howard Palmer Commander TXSG Army Component

COL Michele R. Voorhees

G1, Texas Army National Guard Former NGAT President

CSM John L. Hoxie

Command Sergeant Major Texas Army National Guard

COL Clarence J. Henderson Jr. Commander 72nd IBCT

CSM Christopher Dyer

Command Sergeant Major Recruiting & Retention Command

CHIEF NATION NAMED TEXAS AIR GUARD SENIOR ENLISTED ADVISOR Chief Master Sgt. Marlon K. Nation assumed responsibility as the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Texas Air National Guard from Chief Master Sgt. Kevin J. O’Gorman in a ceremony held at Camp Mabry in Austin on 8 Feb. 2015. During the ceremony, Nation thanked his family and friends for their many years of love, support and sacrifice. After a successful active duty career, Nation enlisted in the Texas Air National Guard at Ellington Field in Houston, Texas in September of 1981 as a Weapons Systems Specialist. Since then he has held various positions at Ellington, including being the noncommissioned officer in charge of Quality Assurance within the 147th Maintenance Group, the Maintenance Operations Flight NCOIC where he was responsible for the oversight of day-to-day operations of several sections including Group Training, Management Analysis, Plans and Programs, Maintenance Operations and Coordination and Budget oversight, as well as serving as the Chief Enlisted Manager for more than 300 enlisted personnel assigned to the 147th Operations Group. In 2011, Nation was selected as the 147th Reconnaissance Wing’s Command Chief Master Sergeant. As the Senior Enlisted Advisor for the Texas Air National Guard, Nation will advise the Texas Air National Guard Commander on all enlisted matters affecting training, effective utilization, health of the force and enlisted professional development.


56th Annual NGAT Conference

Visit and select “2015 NGAT Conference” to download the NGAT Conference Program, view photos, and play the NGAT Taps video honoring those we have lost this past year.




Mark your calendar to join us at the 57th Annual NGAT Conference, 18-20 March 2016 in Arlington, TX



LTC Justin Perryman was selected as the 2015 NGAT Minuteman in recognition of his dedicated service to the Texas Military Forces and outstanding contributions to the National Guard Association of Texas. LTC Perryman has been a member of the National Guard Association of Texas since 2002, and a life member since 2004. LTC Perryman has served the Texas Army National Guard since just after 9/11 when he felt called to defend his country. He is a commissioned officer in the Judge Advocate General’s Corp and has served in a variety of legal assignments throughout his career. In 2006, he deployed to Sinai, Egypt where he served with the Multinational Force & Observers in the Egyptian, Israeli, Jordanian and Saudi Arabian border region. He has also trained with various international forces including the Czech military in Vyskov, Czech Republic in the summer of 2005 and several Latin American militaries in Soto Cano Air Force Base in Comayagua, Honduras in the summer of 2009. LTC Perryman has served as a Task Force Judge Advocate for the Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster Mission, Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Gustav and Dolly. From 2007 to 2012 he was the Senior Defense Counsel for the Texas Army National Guard. LTC Perryman also deployed with the 136th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, in early July, 2012 for service in support of Operation Enduring Freedom to Afghanistan. There he served as the Command Judge Advocate for Task Force Centurion at the Kabul Base Cluster in Kabul, Afghanistan. LTC Perryman served on the NGAT board of directors from 2006-2013. During his tenure on the NGAT board of directors, he served as secretary/treasurer, vice president, president-elect for two years and two years as NGAT president. He co-founded the Texas Military Forces Caucus in Austin with numerous state representatives as members. He has lobbied for many years on behalf of soldier and airmen issues in both Washington, D.C. and Austin. LTC Perryman has long been a vocal advocate for membership in both NGAT and NGAUS. He has encouraged many Soldiers and Airmen to join NGAT after explaining the importance their membership plays in securing current and future benefits. He also served on the NGAUS 2010 Conference Committee as a Distinguished Visitor Escort and Sergeant at Arms. His exemplary service to the National Guard Association of Texas is in keeping with the highest standards of service and uniquely qualifies LTC Perryman for the coveted Minuteman Award.

Most New Members

147th Reconnaissance Wing Texas Air National Guard

Greatest Increase in Membership

Joint Task Force 136th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade

Highest Total Membership 149th Fighter Wing

Texas Air National Guard

Texas Army National Guard

Pictured left to right are COL Kurt Leslie, NGAT President CMSgt Chuck Chavers, MSgt Anita Blue and CMSgt (Ret) Priscilla Leger.




Pictured left to right are CSM Tony Carter, NGAT President CMSgt Chuck Chavers, MSG Daniel Griego and LTC John Crawson.

Pictured left to right are 2nd Lt Phil Fountain, NGAT President CMSgt Chuck Chavers, CMSgt George Longoria, MSgt Albert Cardenas and SSgt Alfred Elizondo.

2015 Conference Survey Comments



Work Session  NGAT Breakfast/Business Session



Social Functions  Sports/Activities  Welcome Party  Spouse's Luncheon  Awards Dinner

4.47/5.0 4.64/5.0 4.18/5.0 4.59/5.0

89.5 92.8 83.6 91.8

Professional Breakouts (average of all) 4.29/5.0


Exhibit Hall  Visit the Exhibit Hall?  Exhibit Hall rating

84.6% of respondents YES 4.45/5.0 89.0

Silent Auction  Did you bid in the Silent Auction?  Silent Auction

49.4% of respondents YES 4.45/5.0 89.0

Time/Family Issues  Enough family/spouse time  Family friendly  Family friendly (those who brought children)

87.1% of respondents YES 82.4.4% of respondents YES 98.0% of respondents YES

NGAT Perceptions  Is NGAT managed well?  Is NGAT properly focused?  Does NGAT speak for your interests?

97.7% of respondents YES 96.8% of respondents YES 99.0% of respondents YES

Was Conference a good value?

89.3% YES

Do you plan to attend next year?

94.8% YES

What we take away:  The conference is an important networking event  Expand breakout offerings - personal and professional  More spouse and retiree oriented activities/breakouts  Do a better job of informing early about activities *Data based on 303 responses received during/after the conference



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Mention these codes for the Sprint Discount Program. Army Corporate ID: GANGB_ZZZ Air Corporate ID: GAANG_ZZZ Activ. Fee: $36/line. Credit approval required. Plan: Offer ends 5/14/2015. No discounts apply to access charges. Includes 12GB of on-network shared data usage, 100MB off-network data usage and unlimited domestic Long Distance calling and texting. Int’l svcs are not included. Max of 5 phone/tablet/MBB lines. SDP Discount: Avail. for eligible company employees or org. members (ongoing verification). Discount subject to change according to the company’s/org’s agreement with Sprint and is avail. upon request for select monthly svc charges. Discount only applies to data service for Sprint Family Share Pack. Not avail. with no credit check offers or Mobile Hotspot add-on. Other Terms: Offers and coverage not available everywhere or for all phones/networks. Restrictions apply. See store or for details. © 2015 Sprint. All rights reserved. Sprint and the logo are trademarks N155014CA of Sprint. Other marks are the property of their respective owners.



Federally insured by NCUA. *Message and data rates may apply. Visit for more information. © 2015 Navy Federal NFCU 13281 (4-15)

SPRING 2015 13281 NGAT Program Ad_415.indd 1

4/15/15 1:55 PM


Ariel Blaylock

Jordyn Senkirik

Lauren Leslie

Christina Dorf

Daughter of LTC (Ret) Monte Blaylock, Life Member since April 1984

Daughter of CSM (Ret) Bryan Senkirik, Life Member since November 1990

Daughter of Col Kurt Leslie, Life Member since July 1989

Daughter of MAJ (Ret) Scott Dorf, Life Member since June 1989

Thomas E. Berry Memorial Scholarship $5,000

Len and Jean Tallas Memorial Scholarship $2,000

Lewis King Memorial Scholarship $2,000

TXNG Retirees Scholarship $1,500

Allison Cline

Kristin O'Neill

Kalyn Leslie

Shelby Dorf

Daughter of LTC (Ret) James Cline, Life Member since November 1984

Daughter of SGT Kevin John O'Neill Jr, Life Member since January 2015

Daughter of Col Kurt Leslie, Life Member since July 1989

Daughter of MAJ (Ret) Scott Dorf, Life Member since June 1989

1SG Harry E. Lux Memorial Scholarship $1,250

CSM John Morgan Memorial Scholarship $1,000

USAA Scholarship $1,000

LTC Garland Parrish Memorial Scholarship $750

DONATE TO THE NGAT EDUCATIONAL FOUNDATION The National Guard Association of Texas Educational Foundation has several endowments honoring former members of the Texas Military Forces. Anyone who wishes to donate to any of these endowments or to create one of your own should contact NGAT at 512-454-7300 or mail their donation directly to the Educational Foundation (NGATEF, 3706 Crawford Ave, Austin, TX 78731-6308). All donations are greatly appreciated


56th ANNUAL NGAT 1st Place Team Maj Gen John Nichols BG Patrick Hamilton Col Kurt Leslie Lt Col Larry Werbiski

g o l f

2nd Place Team Ralph Borja CSM John Hoxie Michael Thomas Rick Gardner

3rd Place Team Lanee Curtis CSM Mark Weedon Col (Ret) Seth Junkins COL James Pleasant

Longest Drive MAJ Perfecto Facundo Closest to the Pin COL Bob Crow

$380 was raised during the golf tournament to benefit the NGAT Education Foundation.


PASSPORT WINNER 50" Flat Screen Color TV Kelly Holt

MALES 1st Place - Ryan Kelly 2nd Place - 1LT Phillip Gillart 3rd Place - MSG Daniel Greigo




FEMALES 1st Place - CPT Amanda Tooke 2nd Place - LTC Carrie Allen 3rd Place - Lauren Gilbert

Congratulations to all our winners!

CONFERENCE WINNERS SILENT AUCTION This year's auction raised $5,246 and many items sold at or above value. Thank you to everyone who participated!


1st Place: 36ID HHBN

2nd Place: 71 BfSB

This year's hospitality rooms were the best we have seen. Units really put a lot of effort into their themes and it was enjoyable to visit each one of them. The overall winner, 36ID HHBN, knocked the socks off their visitors with a monster-sized “Rock’em Sock’em Robots” theme complete with WBC boxers Oscar Cantu, Jesse James Leija, and Omar Figueroa. Our second place winner, the 71st BfSB, took its visitors to Vietnam with their “Apocalypse Now” theme complete with bunkers, a junglesetting, and incredible effects. Finally, our 3rd place winner, the Audie L. Murphy Warrant Officers Association, took us back to 1959 with a “Grease” themed room complete with the T-Birds, Pink Ladies and all the ambiance of Rydell High 3rd Place: Audie L. Murphy School. Warrant Officers Assn.


Membership Committee Report Annual membership has decreased since last year and remains abysmal. At the end of February 2014, just prior to last year's annual conference, we had 291 active annual members, 111 retired/ former Guard annual members, and 103 TXSG annual members, totaling 505 annual members. By the end of February this year, we have 266 active annual members, 60 retired/former Guard annual members, and 31 TXSG annual members, totaling 297 annual members. We do get a considerable number of people who renew their dues during the annual conference, so current numbers will continue to rise slightly. Currently, our life membership stands at 30,129 compared to 30,028 in February of last year. In general our life membership base is very old, so we lose a considerable number every year due to death. Our new life membership numbers have picked up again after a slack year following two years of very strong growth. Last fiscal year we had 218 new life members. So far this fiscal year we have added 97 new life members. Our membership in national organizations remains overall poor. In NGAUS, our membership percentage remains the worst in the nation. Last year we had only 35 active members, 171 active

life members, and 186 retired life members. In EANGUS, our membership has remained constant, but low. At the end of 2013, we had 430 members, compared to 426 at the end of 2013. Texas ranked 31/54 in total members, but 50/54 in percentage of force who are members. We encourage all NGAT members to assist us in expanding membership to the next generation of Guard soldiers and airmen.



(Offer expires 30 Jun 2015)


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Where is my NGAT News Magazine?

Wondering why you've stopped receiving your NGAT News magazine in the mail?

NGAT started publishing a digital edition of the magazine, in addition to the printed copy, two years ago. A notice was published in several magazine editions, requesting you to contact us if you wanted to continue receiving the magazine by regular mail. Stay in touch with what's going on with NGAT. If you are not receiving your NGAT News magazine by email or regular mail, contact us today! 512-454-7300

Operation Guard Care The Texas National Guard Family Support Foundation (TXNGFSF), through a $300,000 grant from the Texas Veterans Commission, Fund for Veterans’ Assistance, announces that grant funds are available for eligible Texas National Guard Soldiers, Airmen, and family members.

Eligible Recipients

TXNG Army or Air Service Members currently serving, DD-214 or NGB-22 required

Former TXNG Army or Air Service Members 3 years service or medical discharge

Spouse of TXNG Army or Air Service Members (proof required)

Dependents of TXNG Army or Air Service Members (proof required) Must be in DEERS & under the age of 18

Spouse of Deceased TXNG Service Member (proof required)

eligible expenses for Emergency Financial Assistance  Housing, Utilities, Childcare, Auto Repairs  TRICARE Medical/Dental Insurance Premiums and/or Co-pays  Financial Counseling Services (Childcare expenses paid to enable attendance)

For more information Eligible applicants may apply by contacting: Texas Military Forces - State Family Programs Family Assistance Specialist 1 (800) 252-8032 or 1 (888) 443-2124, en Español “This program is made possible by a grant from the Texas Veterans Commission Fund for Veterans’ Assistance. The Fund for Veterans’ Assistance provides grants to organizations serving veterans and their families.”

AROUND THE W SGT Roy Covington Jr., a communications specialist in Task Force Stallion, recites the Creed of the Noncommissioned Officer after his promotion to the rank of sergeant while serving in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt as part of the Multinational Force and Observers. (Photo by SFC Lee A. Kirkland)

Texas Army National Guard Soldiers MSG Jason Broyles (left) and CSM Mark Dornbusch (right), members of 3-141st Inf compete at the Best Ranger Competition at Fort Benning, GA.

RLD with

From left to right: CW4 Greg Price, SFC Steve Garza, CW5 Todd Moorehead and COL Micheal Dye stand by a miniature replica of the St. Louis Arch in front of the Scott Air Force Base Operations building. The Army aviators were in Illinois at the U.S. Transportation Command Headquarters for briefings and to receive the award for the best fixed-wing unit in their category. (Photo by MAJ Randy Stillinger)

SGT Alexander Stephens, an intelligence analyst assigned to the 1-112th CAV Rgmt and currently serving under Task Force Sinai, Multinational Force and Observers, loads the magazine into his M4 Carbine rifle during the Task Force Sinai Noncommissioned Officer of the Quarter competition held on North Camp in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt. (Photo By SGT Thomas Duval) CW2 Frank Hinnant (center) wins the Try Charleston Sprint Triathlon Novice category in Mt Pleasant, SC with a time of 1:19:17. CW2 Hinnant was in South Carolina attending the Warrant Officer Advance Course.




Troops from 1-112th CAV Regiment, Task Force Stallion share a light dinner with fellow Multinational Force and Observer (MFO) members aboard an Italian Naval vessel following the Italian Navy’s (MFO) medal presentation ceremony at the Coastal Patrol Unit in the city of Sharm el-Sheikh in the Sinai Peninsula, Egypt. (Photo by SFC Lee A. Kirkland)

the TEXAS NATIONAL GUARD 1LT Joshua Tauer, a UH-60 Black Hawk pilot for Co C 2-149th Avn Bn, prepares his helicopter for a flight in support of this year's Beyond the Horizon exercise in El Salvador. Beyond the Horizon is an annual humanitarian and civic assistance exercise. The exercise lasts for several months and provides construction and medical assistance to partner nations throughout the Central, South American, and Caribbean regions. (Photo by SSG Cliff Coy)

Two joint terminal attack controllers from the 147th Air Support Operations Squadron at Gila Bend, Arizona represent Texas for the annual Coronet Cactus exercise.

NGAT Life Members 2LT Caleb Williams (left) and 2LT Cody Zamaripa (right) enjoy a drink after their completion of Infantry Basic Officer Leader Course at Fort Benning, GA. Both are members of the 1-143rd Inf Rgmt.

The first group of Soldiers depart from a C-5 aircraft upon arriving in El Salvador. Pictured left to right are SGT Andrew Harrelson (Co C 2-149th Avn Bn), SFC Morales (RTI), SGT William Sprague (Co C 2-149th Avn Bn), CW5 Gary Yeager (HSC, 449th Avn Bn), SGT Sonia Alcala (Det 7, Co E,171st Avn Rgmt), CW3 Pedro Vargas (Det 1, Co F, 1-171 Avn Rgmt), SSG Henry Wooten (Co B, 449th ASB ) CW3 Charles Christian (Co C 2-149th) and MAJ Jose Reyes (Co C, 2-149th Avn Bn) A Members of the 147th Reconnaissance Wing get decontaminated after working in a clandestine lab where they were trying to find a radioactive source during the Global Dragon deployment for training at the Guardian Center in Perry, Georgia. (Photo by SSgt Christopher Muncy)

MSgt Clayton Lemons (left) and A1C Samuel Roberts (right) inspect a MQ-1B Predator at the Green Flag East exercise held at the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, Louisiana.

SPC Christopher Potter, a member of 1-143rd Inf Rgmt (Airborne), conducts hands-on 120 MM Gunnery Training at Fort Hood.

Members of Co C 2-149th Avn Bn gather for a photo in El Salvador. Unit members are there participating in Beyond the Horizon. (Photo by SPC Daniel E. Hopper)


The Enlisted


Association of the


National Guard of the United States (EANGUS) 44th Annual Conference

"Race to Indy" August 8-13, 2015 Indianapolis, IN Join us at the 44th Annual EANGUS Conference in Indianapolis, IN. Come find out what EANGUS is doing for you and what you can do for EANGUS. Hear from the senior enlisted leadership in the National Guard and visit with enlisted National Guard leaders from across the United States. Check out the trade show with vendors displaying items and services that are geared toward military members and their families. Come find out how you can make a difference. Visit the NGAT website and click on the EANGUS conference link to register to attend the EANGUS conference. Hope to see you there. Fri, Aug 7

Golf Outing at Deer Creek Golf Course in Clayton, IN

Sun, Aug 9 Ribbon-cutting at the Conference Center & Indiana Welcome Night at the Indiana War Memorial Mon, Aug 10 Open Night, Junior Enlisted Event Tues, Aug 11 All Area Hospitality Night at Military Park Wed, Aug 12 All States Banquet NGAT is still offering a $210.00 life membership that includes life membership in both NGAT and EANGUS. Hurry this special will end on June 30, 2015.




Association of the United States (NGAUS)

137th Annual NGAUS Conference September 10-13, 2015 Nashville, TN

Make plans to attend the 137th Annual NGAUS Conference in Nashville, TN. Music City is prepared to share with you some good ole southern hospitality, great music, lots of information and a chance to see old friends and make some new ones. All conference events will be under one roof in the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Conference Center. You will find plenty of food, shopping and fun right near the resort. Start the conference off by hopping on a Harley and taking a ride to the legendary "Jack Daniels Distillery" in Lynchburg, TN. If you enjoy a slower pace, hit the links at the Gaylord Springs Golf Links where you will find Scottish style links in a par-72 layout, offering 18 holes bordered by limestone bluffs and wetlands. For those attending the Company Grade mixer, be prepared for some fun at the Wild Horse Saloon. During the day you'll hear from guest speakers from the Pentagon and Congress, learn about the state of the Army and Air Guard and discover the latest products and services in the largest defense industry trade show that caters to the National Guard. At the conference you will enjoy the Governors Reception in the exhibit hall offering you good food, music and a better opportunity to visit the exhibits. If you're a runner, don't miss the Fun Run that will be held on the resort grounds. Then to top-off the conference, after the States Dinner you will be entertained at the venue that made Nashville famous with a private show at the Grand Ole Opry. Visit the "NGAUS Conference" tab on the NGAT website for information on NGAUS membership, conference hotels, and conference registration. You don't want to miss this one. Register today.

BOY WITH RARE DISORDER BECOMES A HONORARY MEMBER OF THE TEXAS ARMY NATIONAL GUARD Story & Photos by SFC Malcolm McClendon With his right hand raised, eight-year-old Rowan Windham took the Oath of Enlistment to become the newest member Rowan Windham, left, takes the Oath of Enlistment from BG Sean Ryan, commander, 71st of the Texas Army Troop Command, at an honorary enlistment ceremony held at Camp Mabry. National Guard. Rowan had the unique opportunity family, friends and distinguished guests, Rowan swore to uphold the to be given an honorary U.S. Constitution as many of his fellow guardsmen in attendance did enlistment into the organization before him. Rowan’s father, Brian Windham, described the event as during a ceremony held at its overwhelming and shared his son’s interest in the military and strong headquarters at Camp Mabry in will to survive.

Austin, Texas on March 27, 2015. After an emotional ceremony for friends and family, the young soldier looked out at the audience, cleared his throat and said, “Thank you. This is the best day of my whole entire life.” Rowan is currently battling a rare disorder called ShwachmannDiamond Syndrome, which affects the pancreas, gastro-intestinal tract, immune system, blood and bone marrow. Rowan has spent more than 900 days in the hospital, received dozens of blood transfusions and made 71 trips to the operating room. During one of his stays at the Methodist Children’s Hospital of San Antonio, Rowan met a nurse’s aide, David Hixson, who is also a combat medic in the Texas Army National Guard. There the two grew close. “I met Rowan after my last deployment, and we immediately became friends,” Hixson said. “Even though it wasn’t under the best circumstances, every time he came back it was like seeing an old buddy.” At a recent visit, Hixson informed Rowan that he would be deploying soon, and they would not be able to see each other for a while. This is where the eight-year-old expressed his life-long wish to his friend. “When I told Rowan I was leaving, he told me he too wanted to be in the Army one day," explained Honorary enlistee, Rowan Windham gets a tour of Hixson. “So after CH-47 Chinook by SSG Clay Jenkins, a flight engineer talking to his with the 2-149th Aviation Regiment. mom, I contacted a friend at Camp Mabry, who later contacted a lieutenant colonel in the public affairs office, and it kind of just snowballed from there. And here we are today.” In front of

“Rowan actually enlisted himself into the Army on a piece of paper a couple of years ago, so this is fantastic; he’s got to be way overwhelmed with joy,” Windham said. “He’s always looking to help other people. He has two feeding tubes, one goes to his heart the other to his stomach, and everyday he’ll tell you he has the best life ever.” Rowan’s BG Sean Ryan, left, presents Rowan Windham, right, resilient attitude with a Cavalry stetson and spurs during his honorary enlistment. earned him a spot in his new home unit as he was made an honorary member of the 124th Cavalry Regiment. “Because we know that you are such a trooper, we want to enlist you into the cavalry,” said BG Sean Ryan, commander of the 71st Troop Command and officiator at the enlistment. “A cavalry soldier always moves forward in battle, and we know that you, Rowan, are always moving forward in your own battles.” Rowan will continue to combat his illness as he and his family travel to a specialized hospital in Seattle to learn about a possible bone marrow transplant. As Ryan states, Rowan is on his way to his own deployment, but not alone, he now has more than 24,000 guardsmen by his side.


2015 TXMF Best Warrior Competition The Adjutant General of Texas, Major General John F. Nichols, and Senior Enlisted Leader, Command Sergeant Major Mark A. Weedon, are pleased to announce the winners of the 2015 TXMF Best Warrior Competition that was held 5-7 February. There were a total of thirty-five competitors (22 Army/13 Air) and all did an outstanding job.



texas military forces 2015 joint best warrior



JOINT BEST WARRIOR MSgt Gilbert Magallanez

176th ENG BDE

176th ENG BDE

204th Security Forces Squadron


NGAT Executive Director Ray Lindner (center) presents the two overall Joint Best Warriors, SPC Peter Scharff (left) and MSgt Gilbert Magallanez (right) with a Mossberg allpurpose 12-gauge shotgun on behalf of NGAT for their accomplishments.

A Co. 3-144 IN


NCO BEST WARRIOR MSgt Gilbert Magallanez

204th Security Forces Squadron

147th Air Support Ops Squadron



NCO BEST WARRIOR RUNNER-UP SSgt Steven Hein 136th Airlift Wing

149th Fighter Wing


TEXAS STATE GUARD JUNIOR ENLISTED OF THE YEAR SSG (TX) Juan R. Trevino 3rd Battalion, 1st Civil Affairs Regiment




147th ASOS

NCO OF THE YEAR SSgt Christophor Brors

SENIOR NCO OF THE YEAR MSgt Eric Elizondo 149th FW

204th SFS

FIRST SERGEANT OF THE YEAR MSgt Marvin Williams 149th FW

SENIOR NCO OF THE YEAR SFC (TX) Jay Burrage 1st Battalion, 1st Civial Affairs Regiment



JUNIOR OFFICER OF THE YEAR 2nd Lt Bruce Robison 136th AW

This year’s 2015 Texas Military Forces Best Warrior Competition brought out 35 guardsmen from both the Texas Army and Air National Guard who competed to determine who would be the best of the best on 5-7 Feb. “The Best Warrior Competition is a big deal for Texas and the Texas Military Forces,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Mark Weedon, TXMF senior enlisted adviser. "It is one of the biggest joint events we have involving actual Soldiers and Airmen. This event allows the Soldiers and Airmen to compete with each other in both physical and mental challenges.” The competition demonstrated the knowledge and skills of the guardsmen in seven events, spanning three days. The first day started with an essay which tested their aptitude, writing abilities and critical thinking and how well the Soldiers and the Airmen express their thoughts. Following the writing skills, the competitors met with a panel of senior enlisted leaders who barraged them with a series of questions pertaining to their military tasks. Day two started with a twilight land-navigation course, starting at 5 a.m. and finishing after daybreak. Once again, the Soldiers and Airmen battle-tested their skills in using a map and compass to plot the points, discovering hidden flags throughout the course. Shortly after completing land navigation, the competitors went to the weapons-qualification range and then on to the 11 Army warrior task lanes, where both Army and Air Force participants demonstrated their ability to disassemble and reassemble weapons ranging from a 9mm pistol to a M2 machine gun, as well as testing in combat-first-aid techniques. Many of the competitors felt that the first day of the competition was the most challenging and exhausting. It included the mile-long obstacle course, containing nine stations with rigorous calisthenics in between obstacles, a six-mile ruck march and finished with three mystery events. The total course spanned eight miles as each competitor attempted to conquer each event with a go or no-go while carrying a 35-pound ruck sack on their back. When the Texas Air National Guard first joined the Texas Military Forces Best Warrior Competition in 2013, then SSgt Matthew Rentería proclaimed that he would "win it all." He did not end up winning "it all" in 2013, but he pulled a close second in the noncommissioned officer division of the competition. Matthew returned to compete in the 2015 Best Warrior Competition at Camp Swift, this time bringing a lifelong friend who helped him forge his competitive spirit, SrA Michael Rentería. The fraternal twins are well-known as highly motivated with an intense drive to surpass each The Army National Guard Command other in all pursuits. Sergeant Major, CSM Brunk W. Conley Competition between the brothers covered speaks with SPC Kaycee Stocker, a all aspects of growing up. Matthew has served member of the JTF 136th MEB about the competition at Camp Swift. for 10 years in the Air Guard while Michael has served for eight. Both are members of the 147th Reconnaissance Wing. Both brothers earned bragging rights during this year's competition. Matthew and Michael Photos by Sgt Praxedis Pineda and Michael Giles, 136th Airlift Wing. each achieved the highest event score during the interview portion, and they both scored among the top three in the obstacle course. Matthew earned the highest score on land navigation, and Michael succeeded in earning the highest overall score among the junior enlisted soldiers. One leader in particular traveled halfway across the country to cheer on the Soldiers and Airmen contending to reach the top. CSM Brunk W. Conley, the Army National Guard command sergeant major, visited the competition to offer encouragement to competitors who each diligently trained during their offduty days to prepare for the challenges they would face. Conley said that Texas has a unique strategy for selecting the Best Warrior by including Air Guardsmen in a traditionally Army National Guard only event. "You're one of the only states that I know of that has a joint competition with both Soldiers and Airmen competing with and against each other," he said. "This brings the National Guard together… We learn about our Soldiers and Airmen, what they do. It breaks down barriers."


Brothers TSgt Matthew Renteria (left) and SrA Michael Renteria (right) complete an aptitude test at the Joint Best Warriors Competition.


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Patriot Sponsor First Command Financial Services NGAT salutes our generous sponsors and corporate members who have contributed so much to our success over the years. 30



MEMBERS & SPONSORS CORPORATE MEMBERS ABDG/EnerSys Bowhead Darley Defense DC Matic Enterprises, Inc. FLIR Systems, Inc. JH Medical Solutions, LLC Kaplan University Mobile Concepts Specialty Vehicles North American Rescue, LLC Northrop Grumman Pelican Products ProfitMax Chemical Revision Military Rocky Brands Serious Simulations Source One Distributors, Inc. Southwest Synergistic Solutions, LLC University of Phoenix Waldorf College

Thank You! Please take time to visit their website links located on the NGAT home page.


Michael Miller Senior Manager National Guard & Reserve Programs US Business Development 703.284.4219 business 571.480.1678 cell 703.243.2503 fax

Raytheon Company 1100 Wilson Boulevard Suite 1900 Arlington, Virginia 22209 USA

The Leader in


The NGAT conference is always a good place to run into some retired NGAT Life Members. Below are a few of the retirees we ran into at this year's Conference. Are you retired? If so, send us a photo of what you have been up to and maybe you will be in the NGAT News Magazine.

LTC (Ret) Marvin Harris

COL (Ret) John Drobnica

CSM (Ret) Larry Rayburn

COL (Ret) Keith Daniel

(Pictured right) MG William "Len" Smith, right, Deputy Adjutant General and Commander of the Texas Army National Guard, presents CSM Richard L. Milford, outgoing Texas Army National Guard Senior Enlisted Advisor, the Keeper of the Colors Statue for his service at a change-of-responsibility ceremony held at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas. Milford retires after 30 years of combined service in the U.S. Army and Texas Army National Guard. (Photo by SFC Malcolm McClendon)

(Pictured above) 36th Infantry Division Commander MG Lester Simpson presents 1SG Javier Garcia with the Meritorious Service Medal, the Lone Star Distinguished Service Medal, and a certificate of retirement from the State of Texas for his years of distinguished service and invaluable leadership at his retirement ceremony held at Camp Mabry. (Photo by MAJ Randy Stillenger) (Pictured right) MSgt Chad Milton of the 147th Reconnaissance Wing presents MSgt Jim Rice with a shadow box on the occasion of his retirement. MSgt Rice is retiring after more than 40 years of service in the United States Armed Forces, including service in both the Army and Air National Guard.


1136th PATHFINDER REUNION Photos and Article by MSG Ken Walker

Pictured left to right front row: COL (Ret) James Junot (Former Cdr), Dan Stapleton, Rick Navarette, MSG (Ret) James Borum, MSG (Ret) Lonnie Basham, J.D. Driskill, Mark Bartlett, Caleb Roberts, Jr. (with Air Bear), Rudy Jaime and SFC (Ret) Roy Rangel.

More than two dozen members of the 1136th Pathfinders Detachment, 36th Back row: Graham Patterson, Ronny McDavid, Darryl Tonne, Marshall White, CW4 (Ret) Ed Airborne Brigade, Texas Army National Abrahamson, LTC (Ret) Monte Akers (Former Cdr), MAJ (Ret) Pat McDavid (Former Cdr), CSM (Ret) Guard formerly headquartered at Camp Gary Swan, Ron Chally, Mark Erwin, Oscar Rodriguez, MSG (Ret) Roberto Chavira, Charles Rine, Mabry, Texas celebrated their first reunion Rogelio Hernandez and MSG (Ret) Les Gallatin. April 17th-19th, 2015, 25 years since they capability exponentially. Now, Texas boasts the only disbanded. Airborne Battalion in the ARNG Force Structure, the Pathfinders first appeared in World War II and 1st Battalion 143rd Infantry, a LRSC, two Special continue to serve an important role in today's modern Forces Companies, a Rigger company, and two other military, providing commanders with the option of airborne elements. flexibly employing air assets. Three generations of pathfinders attended the A pathfinder is inserted or dropped into place in reunion ranging from veterans of the Vietnam and order to set up and operate drop zones, pickup zones, Cold War eras to present day pathfinders still fighting air resupply operations, and other air operations such terror in the Middle East. A very special guest, Air as sling-loading equipment in support of the ground Bear, the unit mascot from G Company 143rd LRS unit commander. Pathfinder units often Company, attended wearing his jump wings from three fill roles across the spectrum of foreign continents. their doctrinal missions, along The three-day reunion kicked off Friday with other roles outside of their evening at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8787 in prescribed task lists. north Austin with first formation, a delicious BBQ The 1136th started off dinner and static displays of memorabilia contributed as an airborne detachment in the by attendees. Dinner was followed by a video 1970s after it split off from the 71st presentation and the unveiling of the original unit Brigade, but were disbanded in 1990. parachute sign (pictured left) that was autographed At its zenith, the Texas Military by the Pathfinders in attendance. The hand-painted Forces boasted an entire Airborne vintage sign, dating back to the 1970s, will be added Brigade. Changes in force structure saw this to the airborne exhibit in the Texas Military Forces capability pared down to three small-sized units in the Museum at Camp Mabry. late 1980s with Airborne missions including the 1136th Plans are already under way for the next Pathfinder Detachment, G Company 143rd Long reunion, tentatively scheduled for April 2017. We Range Surveillance(LRS) Company, and the 49th invite former members and all support personnel of Armored Division LRS Detachment. the 1136th Pathfinder Detachment to contact either At its lowest point, Texas airborne forces Roberto Chavira at 512-917-6351, chavi467@yahoo. consisted of only the 65-man 49th Armored Division com or Mark Erwin at 512-750-6028, markjerwin@ LRSD in the early 2000s. Since the Global War, so you can be added to the contact roster. on Terror, the TXARNG has grown its airborne




do you


• what really happened at the alamo? • the last civil war battle was in texas? • that texas had its own navy?

Texas Military Forces Museum Come see 45,000 square feet of uniforms, weapons, tanks, artillery, aircraft, helicopters, and more! Explore the history of Texas Military Forces from 1823 through today.


Camp Mabry • 35th Street West of Mopac • Austin Tuesday – Sunday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. • (512) 782-5659 Photo ID required for adults • FREE ADMISSION!




In March the Texas Military Forces and NGAT hosted the 2nd Annual TXMF Best Warrior Golf Tournament at Pine Forest Golf Club in Bastrop, Texas. The 1st place winners were a team put together at the last minute made up of Pine Forest Golf Course greens keepers. The weather was great and everyone had a wonderful time. Pictured above left to right is "Team NGAT" that consisted of CW3 Stuart Kuhrt, CW4 Anita Dickens, CW4 Robin Anderson and CW5 Ernest Metcalf. Team NGAT did not finish in the top three, but CW4 Dickens did win longest drive for the females. Most importantly, over $3404.00 was raised to assist with the production of the Joint Best Warrior Competition. Thank you to all the participants and sponsors. 

Pictured above are the Governor’s 20 Overall Pistol team winners from the 19th Regiment Texas State Guard. Members left to right are CPL (TX) Jonathan Kelley, 2LT (TX) Scott Hunt, 2LT (TX) David Park and SGT (TX) Sean Mounger. The “Top Gun” award also went to SGT (TX) Mounger. (Photo by Susan Lipcaman) 



SSG Steve Miller, C Troop, 1-124 Cavalry Regiment, spots for his shooter at the Texas Military Forces' Governor's 20 Sniper competition at Camp Swift near Bastrop, Texas. 

Did you know that Dr. James H. "Red" Duke (center), world renowned surgeon and fellow pioneer of Life Flight, served in the Texas Army National Guard as a 1st Lieutenant from 1948-1950? In 1951 he went on to serve as an Army tank commander in Germany. On Friday, February 13th, Dr. "Red" Duke was honored at Texas A&M University with the Order of St. George from the U.S. Cavalry and Armor Association for his achievements in medical science. Pictured with Dr. Duke left to right are BG Joe E. Ramirez, Jr., commandant of the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets; BG Patrick Hamilton, DOMOPS commander and Texas A&M alumni; MAJ David Main and LTC William Davis. (Photo courtesy of The Association of Former Students, Texas A&M University) 

FUTURE LEADERS Meet Texas Officer Candidate and Warrant Officer Candidate School Class #59. This is the future of the Texas Army National Guard. HOOAH! 





BRINGING HOME THE GOLD Congratulations to SPC Jeffrey Messina, a member of Able Company 1-143rd Inf Rgmt, for bringing home two Gold Medals in the 2015 International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation (IBJJF) Houston Open. He placed 1st in the Medium Heavy Division and shared 1st place in overall Absolute Weight. The tournament was held at the University of Saint Thomas in Houston. 

Members of the Texas Army National Guard Recruiting & Retention Command recently completed the Warrior Dash. It is a 5k obstacle course race that anyone can start and everyone can finish. They conquered 12 world-class obstacles and then celebrated with friends. Pictured left to right are SSG Joshua Gallegos, MSG Gabriell Rios III and SSG Diane Wagoner. 



Soldiers from Company A 1-143 Inf Rgmt conduct military operations in urban terrain (MOUT) training exercises at Hargrove MOUT site in Fort Hood, Texas.  U.S. Marines, Sailors and Airmen from Naval Air Station Fort Worth Joint Reserve Base, Texas took part in several Medal of Honor events hosted by the city of Gainesville, Texas held April 8 and 9, 2015. Troops welcomed arriving Medal of Honor recipients at DFW Airport and formed a salute cordon at the city's Medal of Honor park dedication. Pictured are some of the support personnel with the Medal of Honor recipients. 


The 1-149th Attack-Reconnaissance Battalion lite up the aerial gunnery range with 30mm rounds and rockets at Fort Hood. (Photo by MAJ Randy Stillinger) 

Leaders from the Texas Army National Guard and the Texas State Guard leadership meet with the Adjutant General of Texas, Maj Gen John Nichols, to discuss strategy and effective use of resources to be prepared to protect Texas. 

Q: Why is my unit never in the magazine? A: Because no one sent anything in.

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A S O F 04 / 2 0 / 15 *TSgt E. Michael Bowman, Life Member #23112, Retired, Waldorf, MD

MSG Hudson W. “Snooky” Powell, Retired, Austin

SPC Nicolas Garcia, 111th Area Clearance Platoon, San Angelo

Mr. Rodolfo C. Ramirez, Life Member #6959, Retired, Laredo

*SPC Guadalupe Gonzalez Jr., Life Member #18855, Retired, Harlingen

Mr. Samuel D. Riddle, Life Member #3560, Retired, Flat

SFC Vincent A. Kruger, Life Member #26708, Retired, Staples, MN

SFC Harvey L. Schulmeier, Life Member #7114, Retired, Jackson, MS

Lt Col Leslie R. Leavoy, Retired, Sachse

Mr. Charlie C. Sowell, Associate Life Member #907, Retired, Universal City

1SG Richard H. McNabb, Life Member #9695, Retired, Taylor SFC Clifford E. Miller, Retired, Dallas Lt Col David L. Morison, Life Member #17507, Retired, Denison

SGT Donald L. Stinson, Life Member #27985, Retired, Austin SPC Amanda L. Weyrick, Retired, Dallas *Had a NGAT Life Insurance Policy

COL Vernon M. Schofield, Life Member #2918, Retired, Austin (Former President of NGAT 1964 – 1965)

If you are aware of the passing of a current or former National Guard member, please notify us by phone, a letter to our office, or by email at



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Whole Life Insurance Policies are now available for NGAT Members ages 66–75 Members (including associate members) may now apply for whole life insurance even if they have been discharged or retired from the Guard.

 Whole Life Insurance – Pay the same premium for the rest of your life and accrue a cash value  Members ages 66–75 may apply  Amounts of insurance available: $5,000; $10,000; $15,000; $20,000; $25,000; $50,000; and $75,000  Evidence of insurability may be required  Spouses may be insured  Premiums are the same regardless of tobacco usage UNDERWRITTEN BY AMERICAN EQUITY INVESTMENT LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY If interested, please complete the information below and return to: NGAT, 3706 Crawford, Austin TX 78731, FAX (512) 467-6803 PHONE (512) 454-7300 or email NAME_____________________________________________________________________ ADDRESS__________________________________________________________________ CITY__________________________________ ST___________ ZIP__________________ SSN______________________________ DATE OF BIRTH__________________________ DAYTIME PHONE___________________________________________________________ CIRCLE AMOUNT OF INSURANCE DESIRED: $5,000 $10,000 $15,000 $20,000 $25,000 $50,000 $75,000

National Guard Association of Texas 3706 Crawford Avenue Austin, Texas 78731-6308


NGAT PLANNING CALENDAR (As of 30 April 2015)

2015 25


Memorial Day (NGAT Office Closed)



U.S. Army Birthday/Flag Day



NGAT Executive Committee Meeting, Austin



Independence Day (4th of July Holiday Observed)



NGAT Board Meeting, Austin



EANGUS Conference, Indianapolis, IN



Labor Day (NGAT Office Closed)



NGAUS Conference, Nashville, TN



Patriot Day



Columbus Day (NGAT Office Closed)



NGAT Board Meeting, Austin



Veteran’s Day (NGAT Office Closed)

NGAT News Magazine - Spring 2015  

The official publication of The National Guard Association of Texas

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