OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE NATIONAL GUARD ASSOCIATION OF TEXAS Founded 1959
HALL OF HONOR....................14
E1-E6 FREE MEMBERSHIP.......15
2016 NGAT CONFERENCE..........16
TEXAS MILITARY FORCES PROVIDE SUPPORT FOR MAY FLOODS
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
NEWScontents 4 5 6 7 8/9 10/11 12/13 14 15 16 17 19 20 21 22 24
President's Report Members Spotlight Leadership Changes Deployments Legislative Update Annual Training Around the World with the Texas Guard Hall of Honor Membership Drive NGAT Conference Update NGAUS Conference Salute to Retirees Central Texas Floods Around Texas with the Texas Military Forces TAPS/Corporate Members & Sponsors NGAT Planning Calendar
Retired Rep - Region I...........................................Priscilla Leger Retired Rep - Region II...........................................Jerry Horsley Retired Rep - Region III.......................................Randy Ransom
ON THE COVER (left side photos from top to bottom):
Family Readiness Rep...........................................Miguel Torres
ANNUAL TRAINING Soldiers in C Troop 1-124th CAV conduct a joint mission at Joe Pool Lake in Dallas with 2-149th AVN with a waterborne insertion (Helocast) followed by the launching of Zodiacs out the back of the helicopter.
Executive Director.................................................... Ray Lindner
Editor............................................Theresa Billeck-Zuniga Copy Editor................................................Caleb Williams Graphic Designer..........................................Kathy White Publisher.............................. Aus-Tex Printing & Mailing
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HALL OF HONOR From left to right, MSG (Ret) Theresa M. Billeck-Zuniga, CSM (Ret) Margaret “Maggie” B. McCormick and Col (Ret) Harold H. Blackshear stand for a photo opportunity at their induction into the TXMF Hall of Honor at a ceremony held at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas, June 27, 2015. (Photo by SFC Malcolm McClendon). e1 - e6 FREE MEMBERSHIP For a limited time, E1 - E6 can join The National Guard Association of Texas for free. Free membership is good through 31 March 2016. After that time, membership can be renewed at current annual or life membership rates. Visit www.ngat.org for more information. 2016 NGAT CONFERENCE The 2016 NGAT Conference will be held 18 - 20 March 2016 in Arlington, Texas. Highlights include a Welcome Party at Six Flags Over Texas. Visit www.ngat.org for more information. Right Side Photo: Soldiers from 1-124th CAV and D Co., 949th BSB, along with members of Texas Task Force 1, look for survivors of the floods that hit Texas, May 26, 2015. This Search and Rescue – Ground team from the 36th Infantry Division conducted operations in both the Wimberley and Blanco areas utilizing their highwater trucks to rescue 32 civilians and 7 pets after the Blanco River flooded its banks. (Photo by 1SG Ross Dobelbower) 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 I am amazed at the tremendous efforts by the Texas Military Forces over the last few months. Our forces continue to assist in the security of our southern border, we responded to the heavy rains and floods throughout the State and security threats following the Tennessee attacks, and we completed multiple Annual Training events, including a Division Warfighter Exercise. With possible force structure changes and lack of predictability in future manning for the Guard, the need for NGAT’s participation to support our Service Members has never been greater. Legislative efforts to defend educational benefits through the Hazelwood Act were successful. Our program to jump start membership in the organization shows positive results with hundreds of E1s through E6s joining in the last month. We need to continue to spread the word about the membership opportunities and continue to push for the initial goal of 50% membership. Communication is the key to this success: spread the word about the new membership rates, speak about the state of the National Guard, and inform your service members about the role of NGAT. The EANGUS and NGAUS conferences are just around the corner. I highly encourage you to participate so Texas can show our support for our national organizations and establish our rightful place as a leader on the national stage. It is more important than ever for our voice to be loud and clear in support of strengthening the National Guard and ensure we have the personnel, equipment, and resources to fulfill our Constitutional requirements. Now is the time to expand the membership and I need your continued assistance to make it all happen.
Daniel Quick COL, TXARNG NGAT President
2015-2016 NGAT Membership Contest
top 3 commands
56th IBCT - 275 new mbrs 176th Engr Bde - 170 new mbrs 136th MEB - 160 new mbrs
SGT (TX) Corey Howell of the Texas State Guard has been selected as the 2015 recipient of the Gloria Jenell and Marlin E. Mote Endowed Scholarship. The scholarship is reserved for a person who is a member of NGAT and the Texas State Guard, or a person who is the child or grandchild of such a person. SGT Howell is a dual master’s candidate at the McCombs School of Business and the LBJ School of Public Affairs, and is a life member of NGAT. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE Rebecca Hinojosa leaves NGAT after working in various positions in the NGAT office for the past 8 years. She also served as the case manager for the TXNGFSF. We would like to thank Rebecca for her years of service and wish her much success in her new endeavors.
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HQ 36th Sust Bde/HHC 36th Sust Bde - 63 new mbrs 56th IBCT/HHC 2-142nd Inf Rgmt - 58 new mbrs 56th IBCT/HHC 3-144th Inf Rgmt - 52 new mbrs
VISIT WWW.NGAT.ORG FOR COMPLETE UNIT STANDINGS
Corey Receives Mote Scholarship
(current standings as of 1 AUG 2015) top 3 units
HAPPY BIRTHDAY U.S. ARMY CSM Mark A. Weedon, left, Texas Military Forces Senior Enlisted Advisor, along with PFC Nathan Taton, 1-143rd INF, cuts the ceremonial Army Birthday Cake at a ceremony held at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas. Texas Army National Guardsmen, friends and family participated in recognizing the U.S. Army’s 240th birthday. (Photo by SFC Malcolm McClendon)
176TH ENGINEER BRIGADE COMMANDERS Commanders of the 176th Engineer Brigade pose for a photo following the brigades recent Change of Command ceremony. Pictured left to right are: COL Tracey Norris (12-15), MG Lester Simpson (10-12), BG (BVT/ Ret) Larry Patterson (97-01) and COL Greg Chaney (present commander). BG (BVT/Ret) Patterson commanded the Engineer Brigade when it was in the 49th Armored Division. All are NGAT Life Members.
NEW PA ENTERS THE TEXAS ARMY NATIONAL GUARD
97 YEARS OF THE WARRANT OFFICER CORP
COL W. Darrin Weaver, TX MEDCOM Deputy Commander for Clinical Services, gives the Texas Oath of Office to 1LT James Tilton at Fort Hood as he enters the Texas Army National Guard as a Physicians Assistant. 1LT Tilton served for a long time with the 68W program at the 136th Rgmt until being accepted into PA school.
Members of the 136th MEB, CW3 Michael Gautreaux (left) and CW2 David Esparza (right) celebrated the 97th birthday of the Warrant Officer Corps with friends of the Audie L. Murphy Chapter - United States Army Warrant Officers Association at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas.
REDLEGS SUPPORTING EACH OTHER
They say once a Field Artillerymen, Always a Field Artillerymen “Redleg”. Recently friends and family gathered to congratulate COL John Stasney for his 32 years of military service at his retirement ceremony at Camp Mabry. Pictured left to right are SFC (Ret) Richard “Stretch” Allen, SFC (Ret) Mitchell T. Flemming, LTC Les Edwards, COL (Ret) John Stasney and LTC Ed Dextraze. All are NGAT Life Members.
CSM (RET) JIMMY BROYLES INDUCTED INTO RANGER HALL OF FAME On June 24, 2015 in front of family and friends and fellow rangers, CSM (Ret) Jimmy L. Broyles was inducted into the “Ranger Hall of Fame” at Fort Benning, Georgia. The Ranger Hall of Fame has been around since 1993, recognizing contributions of some of America’s most extraordinary soldiers. Inductees are selected impartially from Ranger units and associations, and represent each era of Ranger history. To be eligible for nomination to this hall of fame, a U.S. Army Ranger needs to have served in a Ranger unit in combat; could be either deceased or have been separated or retired from active military service for at least three years. CSM Broyles began his military service in 1970 at Ft. Lewis, Washington where he attended Basic Training. He then attended Advanced Individual Infantry training at Fort Ord, California. After serving only nine months in the Army, he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant and was subsequently sent to Vietnam where he served as a Team Leader with H CO and L CO, 75th Ranger Infantry Regiment (Airborne) respectively. During the course of his duty with the Ranger Regiment in Vietnam, he distinguished himself on several occasions while conducting ground combat operations until being wounded in 1972. Upon his recovery, he served as a Platoon Sergeant for various 75th Ranger Infantry Regiment (Airborne) companies at Fort Carson, Colorado and Fort Stewart, Georgia. He then served as a Drill Sergeant at Fort Gordon, Georgia and as an Instructor at the III Corps Fort Hood NCO Academy. In 1993, CSM Broyles joined the Texas Army National Guard and was eventually promoted to First Sergeant where he served with C CO 3-144th Infantry, B CO 1-143rd Airborne Infantry; and HHC 1-112th Armor. He then served as the Operations Sergeant Major for HHC 3rd Brigade, 49th Armored Division. As a Command Sergeant Major Broyles served in 3-144th Infantry Battalion (Operation Noble Eagle); 4-112th Armor Battalion (Kosovo); Division Engineer Brigade, 36th Infantry Division and finally as the CSM for the Texas Army National Guard. CSM Broyles’s awards and decorations include the Combat Infantry Badge; Expert Infantry Badge; American Parachutist Badge; Vietnamese Parachutist Badge; Australian Parachutist Badge; Drill Sergeant’s Badge; Bronze Star with “V” Device and 1/OLC; and one Bronze Star for Meritorious service; Legion of Merit; Meritorious Service Medal with 3/OLC; Purple Heart; Army Commendation Medal with “V” Device; Army Commendation Medal with 3OLC; Air Medal with 1 OLC; Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry; Vietnam Campaign Medal; Global War on terrorism Service Medal; and numerous other federal and state awards. CSM Broyles retired from the Texas Army National Guard in 2011 after completing 29 years of military service and is a life member of NGAT. He is a retired police officer with the Denton County Sheriff’s Office and lives in Hamilton, Texas with his wife, June. NGAT congratulates CSM (Ret) Broyles on his induction into the Ranger Hall of Fame. It is a honor well deserved for this great Soldier and leader who has been an example to so many over his vast military and civilian career. Rangers lead the way!
TEXAS MILITARY FORCES LEADERSHIP CHANGES COL Daniel Quick Commander 71st Battlefield Surveillance Brigade
Col Jeffrey Young
Commander 254th Combat Communications Group
COL Greg Chaney Commander 176th Engineer Brigade
COL Scott Mac Leod
Commander Joint Task Force 136 (Maneuver Enhancement Brigade)
MAJ (P) Paul Mancuso Commander Camp Mabry Garrison Command
CCMSgt George Longoria
CMSgt Darin S. LaCour, (left) wing weapons manager for the 149th Maintenance Group, based at Joint Base San AntonioLackland, Texas, administers the “Chief’s Oath” to newly promoted CMSgt Steven W. Tallant (right), quality assurance superintendent for the group. Col Michael L. Reid (far left), commander of the group, presided over the ceremony, which was held at the residence of Tallant’s parents because his father, a retired member of the U.S. Air Force, was in frail health and unable to travel to the base to attend the ceremony. (Photo by TSgt Eric L. Wilson) COL David Webb, 56th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (IBCT) Commander, passes the saber to CSM Murphy McCardell (center), incoming Command Sergeant Major for the 56th IBCT during the change of responsibility ceremony in Fort Worth, TX. CSM McCardell is replacing CSM Mark Horn. Both are members of the NGAT Board of Directors. (Photo by SPC Ashely Campbell)
attends the Command Chief’s Orientation Course at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, TX. CCMSgt Longoria is the Command Chief for the 149th Fighter Wing.
DEPLOYMENTS HOUSTON ASTROS HONOR THE 136TH EXPEDITIONARY SIGNAL BATTALION In front of a near capacity crowd at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas just prior to the start of a Houston Astros regularly scheduled baseball game members of the 136th Expeditionary Signal Battalion (ESB) conducted their deployment ceremony. The crowd rose to its feet during the on-field ceremony honoring the 136th ESB, which is about to depart for training at Fort Hood and deployment to Kuwait. The unit will provide communications services to U.S. troops in Kuwait, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt. About 300 soldiers and family members received tickets to the game, which was broadcast, along with the pregame ceremony, on the Armed Forces Network.
GUARDSMEN DEPLOY TO KOSOVO FOR PEACEKEEPING MISSION A small detachment of service members of the Texas Army National Guard bid farewell to their families, friends and community during a mobilization ceremony at the Mckenna Event Center near their hometown armory in New Braunfels, Texas. The detachment of 32 military intelligence Soldiers from A Company, 636th Military Intelligence Battalion, are headed to Kosovo for a nine-month deployment. They will be supporting NATO’s continued peacekeeping efforts to help and maintain a safe and secure environment for the people of Kosovo. This mission is part of the United Nations-led peace support operation called Kosovo Force, an international effort created on June 12, 1999, to build peace and stability in the area. (Photo By SPC Christina Clardy)
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Legislative Report Federal The biggest challenge that the Texas Guard faces at the federal level is the protection of Army force structure. The Army’s attempt to transfer attack helicopter assets from the Guard to the active force was thought to be preempted by the Congress’ formation of a commission to study the idea and make recommendations, but the Army chief of staff directed his staff to move forward. A new chief of staff may wait on the commission’s recommendations, but there remains a threat to existing Guard assets. In addition to the direct threat to force structure due to transfer of assets is the more insidious threat to aviation assets due to age and obsolescence of the Black Hawk fleet. We have asked you to write to Congress to preserve funding for additional birds. Other legislative battles loom over funding and benefits. We will keep you updated on Facebook and our NGAT website as action is needed, so please check each regularly.
State The Texas Guard had a very successful session this year. Perhaps the most significant victory was in receiving state matching funds for armory refurbishment that will be funded partially with federal dollars. As we reported on our website and Facebook, there was no action taken to amend the Hazlewood Education benefits. However, the future remains uncertain. You will recall that at the start of this year’s session, a federal judge ruled that the current limitation on Hazlewood eligibility based on having been born and entered the service from Texas was unconstitutional. While the state intends to appeal this decision, the threat of having to open Hazlewood benefits to all Texas veterans (including those who live here while assigned on active duty to Fort Hood, Fort Bliss, etc., and all those veterans who have retired to Texas) was a threat to the Hazlewood benefit, since it could potentially bankrupt the state’s higher education system. During this state legislative session, an attempt was made to address how to retain the benefit yet curb the potential costs. The colleges and universities united to project an astronomical growth of costs associated with expanded benefits. No one can deny that there is (and will be) an adverse impact on the individual colleges and universities who have to underwrite the cost of free education to veterans who use Hazlewood, however we believe the impact is not as serious as is reported by the institutions. NGAT worked closely with all parties (senators, representatives, the Texas Veterans Commission, and colleges and universities) to attempt a compromise, and in the end we supported a bill that would have retained unchanged the educational benefits for veterans who had completed six months active Governor Greg Abbott (center) meets with the National Commission on the duty. However, the legacy part of the benefit (that part of the Future of the Army to express his support for both the citizen-soldiers of benefit able to be transferred to dependent children) would the Texas Army National Guard (TXARNG) and the active duty Army troops change to require the veteran to have served six months on who call Texas home. Attending the meeting from the Texas National active duty and five and a half years on active and/or reserve Guard was the Adjutant General of Texas, Maj Gen John F. Nichols and the status in order for the benefit to be passed on. We believed Chief of the Adjutant General’s Staff, COL Greg Chaney. (Photo courtesy of this to be a fair compromise and one that would retain the the Texas Governor’s Office) legacy portion of the benefit. When the Senate bill containing this language came to the House, we supported it. The House passed a version that actually expanded all existing benefits to all Texas veterans, and the two bills went to conference, where no agreement was reached and no compromise bill emerged. Other veteran organizations fought any amendment to the current benefit. We believed this to be short-sighted, and potentially dangerous to retaining any educational benefit resembling the current law. We are continuing to work with legislators to require a better cost estimate from colleges and universities, and will work to craft legislation in the next session that will secure a robust veterans educational benefit (that will include Guard service).
armed guards at camp mabry
four star visitor
Armed guards now protect the entrance to Camp Mabry because on July 22, 2015 Texas Governor Greg Abbott said he authorized the adjutant general of the Texas National Guard to arm Guardsmen at military facilities across Texas. Abbott joined governors in at least a half-dozen states ordering Guardsmen to be armed in the wake of an attack on two military facilities in Tennessee.
Let your voice BE heard. WRITE TO CONGRESS. www.ngat.org/legislative.htm
General Robin Rand (left) former commander of Air Education and Training Command, Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Air Force Base, Texas and recently confirmed as the first four-star general to lead Air Force Global Strike Command is greeted by COL John Kane, Commander of the 149th Fighter Wing. General Rand was in Texas to visit members of the 149th Fighter Wing and 182nd Fighter Squadron. (Photo by 1st Lt Sophia L. Alexander)
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Soldiers in C Troop 1-124th CAV conduct a joint mission at Joe Pool Lake in Dallas with 2-149th AVN with a waterborne insertion (Helocast) followed by the launching of Zodiacs out the back of the helicopter.
ANNUAL TRAINING WITH THE TEXAS MILITARY FORCES
Pictured above are members of G Co 949th BSB; commanded by CPT Ramey Grafton and 1SG Jose Alvarez. Their primary mission is field feeding, transportation, and maintenance. During Annual Training, the divisionâ€™s focus was on crew served weapons qualifications. Through hard work and training, this forward support companyâ€™s gun crews qualified with the 2nd highest score in the 36th Infantry Division.
(Pictured above) Soldiers from 1-133rd Field Artillery guide a CH-47 Chinook helicopter as they prepare to sling load a 105mm Howitzer during an air assault exercise as part of their Annual Training. (Photo by 1SG Gerson Reyes)
Soldiers with the 136th Expeditionary Signal Battalion conduct pre-mobilization training at Camp Swift in Bastrop, Texas. The unit is preparing for a deployment to Kuwait and surrounding areas. (Photo by MSG Daniel Griego)
Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen with the Texas Military Forces conducted annual training in various cities across Texas. The annual training by the Texas Army and Air National Guard and the Texas State Guard is designed to give military commanders the opportunity to take their staff and units to the field to hone service members’ proficiency and maintain a high level of mission readiness. Additionally, annual training conducted in a joint environment with local and state agencies enables the Texas Military Forces to test its ability to react and help improve communication and coordination with its civilian partners. Over the last ten years, the Texas Military Forces has trained and mobilized over 30,000 Soldiers across the state of Texas in support of combat operations and natural disaster relief. Members of the 136th Logistics Readiness Squadron Drop Zone Team from the 136th Airlift Wing poses for a photo in Fort Worth at the completion of training.
COL James Pleasant, the lethal effects chief for the 36th Infantry Division, briefs the commanding general and his fellow staff officers, during a staff huddle at the division’s Warfighter exercise at Fort Hood, Texas. The exercise, a combat simulation, focuses on refining and improving staff processes and coordination. (Photo by SGT Michael Vanpool) PFC (TX) Justin Stanton, 8th Regiment, Texas State Guard, carries cases of ready-to-eat meals for residents of Brazoria County during a point of distribution exercise at Alvin Community College. (Photo by Capt (TX) Shawn James)
Soldiers from the 3-144th Infantry Regiment “Fourth Texas” conduct an air assault operation from a 2-149th GSAB “Chinook” helicopter at Fort Hood, Texas during Annual Training. (Photo by MAJ Randy Stillinger) Members of the 249th Transportation Company conduct water operations with their search and rescue team with local agencies in a zodiac in Lufkin, Texas.
A member of Trp C (DRT) 1-124th CAV fires a M136 AT4 Light Anti Armor weapon during training conducted at Riggs Anti Armor Range at Fort Hood, TX.
AROUND THE W
A1C Luren Baylor, a member of the 136th Force Support Squadron, disposes of the excess breakfast by feeding it to the livestock at the Boy Scouts of America, Camp William Hinds, Raymond, Maine. Unit members provided meals for more than 70 Guardsmen and Navy Reservists performing their annual two-week training at Camp Hinds. (Photo by SMSgt Elizabeth Gilbert)
SSgt Robert Johnston (front), 136th Civil Engineer Squadron, Texas Air National Guard and U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Lee Wiebach, U.S. Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 27, raise the US flag after the erection of the 100-foot communications tower at Raymond, Maine. Both Guardsman and Reservist collaborate and train side by side during their annual training while they give back to the local community of Raymond. (Photo by SMSgt Elizabeth Gilbert)
The Commander of the 1-143rd Infantry Regiment, LTC Max Krupp (right) reads the oath of reenlistment to SPC Chris Allgeier (left), 1000 ft above ground level while cruising at 150 mph, with 60 of their best combat equipped friends watching on. They celebrated the occasion a few minutes later by jumping out of a C130 over Eastern Wyoming while conducting training as part of Operation Golden Coyote. (Photo by SPC Joseph Cathey) Members of 1st Battalion (Airborne) 143rd Infantry Regiment relax on a tarmac in South Dakota awaiting their Airborne Assault into the great state of Wyoming.
Members of the 531st Air Force Band, Band of the Southwest, play patriotic songs to the local community at Ashley Pond, Los Alamos, New Mexico, July 3, 2015. (Photo by MSgt Charles Hatton)
Members of the Texas Army National Guard show some Texas pride during a recent visit to the National Guard Bureau in Arlington, VA. Pictured left to right are: CPT Andrew Tillman, MSG Gabe Rios, CSM Kristopher Dyer, 1LT Rachel Petruska, MAJ Melva Rivera, MAJ Rita Holton, CPT Andrea Hinnant and Lucia Briones
with the TEXAS GUARD
Soldiers of the Special Operations Detachment (Airborne) â€“ Africa (SOD-A), simultaneously deployed to five countries in Northwest and Central Africa. For over a month the Special Operations Soldiers worked with counter terrorism forces in Chad, Cameroon, Niger, Tunisia and Nigeria to enhance their capabilities to battle Boko Haram, Al Qaeda and other violent extremist groups. The soldiers pictured are taking a break with a friendly game of soccer. The mission was part of US Africa Commandâ€™s premiere annual exercise in the region, known as Flintlock.
SGT Roy Covington Jr. (left), a communications sergeant in HHT 1-112th, receives his reenlistment 15 meters below the surface of the Red Sea from Capt. Ishmael Gantt, Commander of HHT 1-112th Cavalry Regiment. The 1-112th Cavalry is currently serving as part of the Multinational Force and Observers in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt. (Photos by SFC Lee A. Kirkland)
Soldiers assigned to 143rd Airborne Infantry Regiment, participate in sling load training during Operation Golden Coyote at Camp Guernsey in Guernsey, WY. (Photo by SPC Josephine Carlson)
The men and women of the 147th Reconnaissance Wing recently participated in Warrior Day 2015. The airmen competed by squadron in various events including soccer, kickball, basketball, a fitness challenge and other sports. The day was a great success with the 147th Air Support Operation Squadron taking top honors as the fittest squadron in the Wing.
Submit your photos for Around The World to NGATnews@ngat.org www.ngat.org
2015 TXMF HALL OF HONOR INDUCTEES
The Texas Military Forces Hall of Honor program was established in 1980 to recognize outstanding Texas Air, Army and State Guard members. Since its inception, more than 112 members of the TXMF have been inducted. The new inductees picture and a narrative explaining their service will be displayed on the Hall of Honor Inductees wall in Building 8 on Camp Mabry for one year and then will be moved to be permanently displayed in the conference room of the Brig. Gen. John C.L. Scribner Texas Military Forces Museum in Austin, Texas.
Col (Ret) Harold H. Blackshear Colonel (Retired) Harold H. Blackshear of San Antonio, Texas enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in Aug. of 1949, as a T-6 trainer and F-51 Mustang Fighter mechanic. Following three years at the University of Texas, where he majored in architectural engineering studies, Blackshear received a commission in the Texas Air National Guard in 1956. Blackshear attended pilot training and finished at the top of his class, accumulating 3,639 hours of flight time in all-weather fighter interceptors, tactical fighters and support aircraft. Blackshear’s work ethic is mission oriented as evident in unmatched performance as the air technician base civil engineer and commander of the 149th Civil Engineering Squadron that maintained a C-1 combat-ready status. His base master planning proved invaluable, setting standards, cutting costs, and building state of the art facilities. His design of a first of its kind mobile hydraulicallyoperated thrust frame supporting an engine test stand to provide safe change-over for use with a unique noise suppressor with either aircraft or engine, earned him the prestigious NGAT Minuteman Award. His design of a highly-specialized foundation and appurtenances for the first “Hush-House,” resulted in building an additional 126 Air Force-wide. He also is credited with the design and construction of the first military non-destruct inspection laboratory that high-intensity x-rays detect imperfections in metal. Blackshear chaired a select group of base civil engineers to develop a mission directive for a civil engineer emergency force. For state employees, he developed a career progression ladder that resulted in adoption of Senate Concurrence Resolution #08 effective state-wide. Blackshear served the National Guard Bureau during three one-year terms as chief engineer of the ANG Civil Engineers Association. His final position with the TXANG was as director of plans, where he was promoted to colonel, receiving the Meritorious Service Medal. He retired from the Texas Military Forces in March of 1986.
CSM (Ret) Margaret “Maggie” McCormick
MSG (Ret) Theresa Billeck-Zuniga
Retired Command Sergeant Major Maggie McCormick’s service in the Texas Army National Guard began August 1977 as an administrative specialist. During her service with the TXMF, McCormick served as personnel sergeant, first sergeant and chief personnel sergeant; the first female sergeant major to hold the position. Later, McCormick served as the chief personnel services sergeant, while simultaneously serving as a command sergeant major for the 149th Personnel Services Battalion. During her career in the personnel field, her superior knowledge of personnel services contributed exponentially to the success of the organization. She implemented measures that streamlined personnel action processing throughout all levels of the Texas Army National Guard. McCormick frequently traveled throughout the state visiting subordinate units to ensure the competency of the personnel force. She unselfishly dedicated many off-duty hours of her time to ensure the health, welfare and morale of all Soldiers in the Texas National Guard was high. McCormick is the recipient of the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, the Army Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters, the Army Achievement Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the Lone Star Distinguished Service Medal, the Texas Outstanding Service Medal, the Texas Medal of Merit, the Adjutant General’s Individual Award and the Texas Faithful Service Medal.
Master Sergeant (Retired) Theresa M. BilleckZuniga, of Austin, served a total of 26 years active duty in the U.S. Air Force and the Texas Army National Guard. Her service in the Guard began in March of 1988, when she enlisted as a personnel records specialist. Throughout her career in the Texas National Guard, Billeck-Zuniga served as an administrative specialist, unit clerk, training noncommissioned officer, readiness NCO, recruiter and a operations NCO. Billeck-Zuniga has a record of superior achievements that enhanced the image of the Texas Military Forces throughout her career. During her career she was involved with many programs that brought attention to the Guard, to include training events, unit activities, retiree events, family program and deployment/ homecoming ceremonies. In 1996, the Adjutant General selected the Billeck family as the Texas National Guard Family of the Year for exemplifying the total family concept. From 1997 to 2000, she made the National Guard Bureau honor roll achieving 44 enlistments each year, as the first female recruiter for an all-male battalion. As a National Guard Association of Texas life member and member of the board of directors from 2001-2007, she served as only the second female president of the association from 2006-2007 and is only one of four females to ever receive the prestigious Minuteman award. She has served as the editor of the NGAT News Magazine for more than 10 years spending hours searching for stories that highlight the citizen-Soldiers and Airmen of the Texas Military Forces. Through the NGAT Silent Auction she has raised over $52,000 for scholarship to be given to TXMF members. Among her numerous awards are the Meritorious Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters, Army Commendation Medal with seven oak leaf clusters, Army Achievement Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Humanitarian Service Medal, Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, Army National Guard Master Recruiter Badge, Career Counselor Badge, Lone Star Distinguished Service Medal, the Texas Outstanding Service Medal, The Texas Medal of Merit, Honorable Order of Molly Pitcher and Order of Saint Martin.
For more information about the Texas Military Forces Museum visit their website at www.texasmilitaryforcesmuseum.org
TOGETHER WE CAN AFFECT THE PRESENT AND CHANGE THE FUTURE • • • •
In an effort to get our lower enlisted personnel involved in the fight for our military benefits and the shaping of the future of the Texas Military Force, NGAT is offering a FREE annual membership to all Soldiers, Airmen, Marines and Sailors serving in the Texas Military Forces in the rank of E1-E6. The greater our membership numbers, the more influence NGAT can bring to the political decision-makers and continue the fight on top issues affecting you and your family.
Some of our current priorities are: Protecting the Hazelwood Act educational benefits. Countering the Army’s proposed cuts to Guard force structure and transfer of Guard combat aviation assets to the active force. Back the issue of establishing veteran status for the reserve component. Support lowering the 60 year old age restriction for the reserve component to collect retirement benefits.
Free membership is good through 31 March 2016. After 31 March 2016, membership can be renewed at current annual member or life member rates.
$100.00 Life Membership Special is available to everyone for a limited time.
visit www.ngat.org to See where your unit stands in this membership drive. Help your unit get on top, tell your friends to join NGAT today!
NO COST $1,000 LIFE INSURANCE POLICY FOR CURRENTLY SERVING GUARD MEMBERS HAVE YOU SIGNED UP FOR YOUR FREE POLICY??? Effective April 2015, NGAT began issuing a FREE $1,000 life insurance policy for all Soldiers and Airmen who are currently serving in the Texas Army/Air National Guard*. The policy will stay in effect until the service member leaves the Texas Guard. If you currently have the NGAT Group Term Policy, your policy will automatically be increased by $1,000 while you are serving in the Texas National Guard. • • •
Coverage can be assigned to a beneficiary or a funeral home Paid within 24 hours Paid without a death certificate (A death certificate will later be required to close out the claim)
Visit www.ngat.org to sign up * This policy is not available to members of the Texas State Guard. Whole Life Policies are available for members of The Texas State Guard. Contact NGAT for more information.
57th NGAT conference 18-20 March 2016
Sheraton Arlington Hotel and the Arlington Convention Center Arlington, Texas Registration All attendees must pay the registration fee. Registration fee is $15.00 per person. Junior Enlisted Package (E1-E6 only) deadline 5 Feb 2016 $300 (includes 2 Registrations, 2 Meal Packages, 2 Nights at Hotel)
ONLINE REGISTRATION NOW AVAILABLE
Meal Packages • Early Bird Meal Package fee is $110 and closes on 29 January 2016. • Regular Meal Package fee is $120 and closes on 1 March 2016. (The deadline for meal packages is 1 March 2016. After this date, meals must be purchased individually as available.) • A $25 late fee will be added to all registrations received after 1 March 2016. • All cancellation requests must be received in the NGAT office prior to 12 February 2016. Hotel • Sheraton Arlington, 1500 Convention Center Drive, Arlington, TX 76011 • Make your reservations directly with the hotel at: 1-800-442-7275. Make sure to identify yourself as a member of the National Guard Association of Texas. • Hotel rate: $105 single/double plus tax per night. • Hotel reservations can also be made online at the NGAT website. (NGAT cannot guarantee rooms after 15 February 2016) Attire NGAT Business Session: Business Casual NGAT Dinner: Army - Service Uniform/Mess Uniform Air - Mess Dress/Service Dress. Civilians - Business Suit/Evening Formal Wear. Spouses - After-Five Attire. Conference Optional Events • Golf Tournament – Shotgun, Florida scramble with low net/low gross competition. The golf tournament is open to both registered and non-registered attendees of the conference. Registration includes green fee, cart, continental breakfast, lunch, and award plaques. • 13th Annual Silent Auction – Bid on over 200 auction items and take advantage of some great bargains on gift baskets, jewelry, weekend getaways, and tickets to music, sports and other entertainment venues. • Wine Tasting - Enjoy a delicious variety of Texas wines at our wine tasting. • Spirits Tasting - Come and lift your spirits at our spirits tasting. • NGAT Welcome Party – Come enjoy our Six Flags Over Texas party. Enjoy a 200-acre amusement/theme park with more than 50 rides, plus live bands & family-oriented shows. The Welcome Party menu includes “all you can eat” sliced BBQ brisket or grilled chicken with sides, garden salad, and ice cold refreshments. So bring your whole family and enjoy an evening with friends at the NGAT Welcome Party at Six Flags Over Texas. A Six Flags nation-wide season pass voucher is available with each Welcome Party ticket purchased. (The voucher can be redeemed for a season pass for an additional $29.99 at the park.) • Enjoy a leisurely lunch at the Spouses Luncheon on Saturday. Registration fee includes lunch, entertainment, and prizes. • Saturday Dinner – Dinner presentations include the Minuteman and Scholarship awards. After dinner, guests will have the opportunity to visit hospitality suites. • Hospitality Suites will be located at the hotel and units will compete for “Best Suite” award. • The NGAT Social Lounge – Visit and mingle with friends in a more conversation-friendly environment. • Enjoy a delicious breakfast, fellowship, and prayer during the NGAT Prayer Breakfast on Sunday morning.
REGISTER ONLINE by visiting the NGAT website at www.NGAT.org 16
O O F R . E O N R O C L R O E S D E TO IT. N U L L A
137th NGAUS General Conference & Exhibition
Sept. 10-13, 2015, Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center, Nashville, TN Big-name musicians, senior defense leaders, professional development, networking opportunities, a joint military (Army, Air & Dom Ops) trade show and all hotel rooms and events for attendees all in one facility. For more information, go to www.ngat.org/ngaus.htm #NGAUS2015
Texas National Guard Family Support Foundation & NGAT Educational Foundation Golf Tournament Pine Forest Golf Club, Bastrop, Texas Monday, August 31, 2015 RE 8:30 Shotgun Start AT G W W GI ST R ER
TE OR GIS AT. E R .NG
WW E . NG R AT AT. O RG
4 Person Teams or Individuals $55.00 per person $5.00 Mulligans - Limit 2 per person Sponsor a Hole! -- $200.00 Tax Deductible Donation
W. W W
Longest Drive, Closest-to-Hole prizes and much more! Show Your Support To Our Texas Military Families!
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FIELD ARTILLERY REUNION
COL MICHAEL MITCHELL BIDS FAREWELL Commander of the 149th Fighter Wing, Col John F. Kane presents Col Michael F. Mitchell with a Certificate of Retirement signed by Governor Greg Abbott at his recent retirement ceremony held at Joint Base San Antonio - Lackland, Texas.
Former members of the 4-133rd FA got together recently for an “Old Timers Reunion” in New Braunfels, TX.
CALLING ALL CENTRAL TEXAS NATIONAL GUARD RETIREES October 17, 2015 (12:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.)
Southside Market Barbeque, 1212 Hwy 290 E, Elgin, TX 78621 All retired Texas Army and Air National Guardsmen and women are invited to attend the first Central Texas National Guard Retiree Biennial Reunion. The purpose is to eat BBQ, re-acquaint with each other, tell war stories, bring photo albums and catch up with those Airmen and Soldiers that we served with. There is no charge for attending; each will pay for their own meal. We look forward to seeing you there. If you believe that you can attend, please RSVP to email@example.com. Include your name, rank and last unit of assignment and the number of people in your party. Send any photos that you would like to share at the Reunion to the email address above. The 249th Signal BN will be holding a reunion to honor former members and their families. The event will feature exhibits and dinner and will be a great opportunity to be re-united with fellow Signal Warriors.
Saturday, September 26, 2015 1:00 pm to 9:00 pm Billy Sowell Banquet Room - Camp Wisdom Scout Camp The reunion dinner will cost $15.00 per person and $3.00 per child.
Anyone wishing to attend may RSVP at the following site: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/249th-signal-battalion-reunion2015-tickets-17109259255?nomo=1 For more information, contact COL (Ret) Janice Bruno at SignalWarrior@outlook.com
TEXAS MILITARY FORCES PROVIDE FLOOD SUPPORT DURING MAY RAINS
TEXAS NATIONAL GUARDSMEN rescued more than 100 people in May after a series of heavy storms pounded many parts of the state, causing historic and deadly flooding. Torrential rains hit all the major cities in Texas along with the small towns and cities that lie in and around their communities. Overflowing rivers swept cars off streets and buildings off their foundations, leaving hundreds homeless and at least 24 lives lost in the flooding. Texas Governor Greg Abbott shakes hands with SSG (TX) William Wiley a member of the 39th Composite Regiment, Texas State Guard thanking guardsmen for their support during the recent flooding. Five Soldiers from the 39th Composite Regiment, Texas State Guard provided support to the Texas Disaster District Coordinator, the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Air National Guard during flooding emergencies in Wichita Falls, Texas, May 23-28, 2015.
(Pictured above) Engineers from the 111th Engineer Battalion, along with local first responders rescue three people from a stalled vehicle stuck in a low water crossing in Grandbury, Texas on May 26, 2015. (Photo by 1LT Max Perez)
Members of Texas Task Force 1 Urban Search & Rescue and Soldiers in the Texas National Guard get ready to search for missing people in the Wimberley, Texas, flood on May 26, 2015. (Photo by Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)
Texas Army National Guard soldiers mobilized on state active duty conduct a safety briefing with Texas Task Force 1 before heading out on search and rescue missions along the Blanco River. (Photo by CPT Patrick Gurski)
In May when dangerous flash floods trapped people in North Texas, a National Guard helicopter was called in to rescue stranded residents from the rising waters. Pounding rains overflowed creek banks and poured over the rural town of Krum, TX. Dramatic television footage showed the brown water swirling over abandoned cars as livestock scrambled to high ground and a guardsman dangled from a helicopter cable helped rescue a baby and three adults from flooded homes about 50 miles northwest of Dallas.
U.S. AIR FORCE AMBASSADORS
Members of the 136th Airlift Wing prepare a patient for transport to the triage area during the Air-X 2015 in College Station, Texas. Air-X is the largest statewide joint force exercise conducted to prepare for natural disasters on the Texas coastline and gulf region. (Photo by 136th AW PAO)
MARITIME REGIMENT BAND Say hello to the Texas State Guard Maritime Regiment Band. Core members pictured left to right are MSgt (TX) Matthew Balboa, who is the band master and plays trombone, euphonium, and tuba. SGT (TX) Jason Stubbs plays tuba, electric bass, and baritone. PO2 (TX) Thomas Hastings plays the trumpet and PO2 Belen Escobedo plays all strings and french horn.
JOHN LEVITOW AWARD SrA Candace Leal (left) a member of the 149th Fighter Wing is pictured with her mother CMSgt (Ret) Judy Garcia after receiving the John Levitow Award at her Airmen Leadership School. This award is presented to the student who achieves the highest overall standing from a combination of academic scores, performance evaluation, and leadership qualities. Only one student receives this award in each class.
SSgt Stephanie Hall (left) and TSgt Juan Flores III (right), both from the 149th Force Support Squadron out of the 149th Fighter Wing, competed against all San Antonio airmen (active, guard and reserve) to represent the Air Force at the numerous events throughout the year to include FIESTA. These ambassadors stand by the wreath that was presented at the annual Fiesta San Antonio Pilgrimage to the Alamo, a memorial tribute to the Alamo heroes and the heritage of Texas. The wreath-bearing procession is a solemn occasion during which historic, civic, patriotic, military and school groups walk silently to the Alamo carrying wreaths, which are placed at the Alamo. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Joint Base San Antonio – Randolph AFB)
TEXAS GUARDSMAN DIES SAVING HIS CHILDREN AT the BEACH A Memorial Day celebration turned tragic for a Texas Army National Guard family at Matagorda Beach, May 25, 2015. SFC Joseph Ros died after rescuing his children from a riptide on Memorial Day. Ros was at Matagorda Beach with his family and others when three of Ros’ children and another child were being pulled under by a rip current. Ros and another rescuer leaped into the water to save them, said Matagorda County Sheriff’s Department Sgt. James Orr. The children were pulled to the shore safely, but Ros lost consciousness. Three other rescuers, including a police officer, pulled an unconscious Ros ashore, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office. Despite receiving CPR on the scene until emergency medical services arrived, they were unable to save his life. SFC Ros entered the military in 1989 as a combat engineer and served in various engineer units across Texas. He deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in late 2004 to 2005. Just days before he passed, Ros was helping the Guard coordinate the engineer response to severe flooding across the state. In civilian life Ros held multiple jobs in education, including as a special-needs teacher, a middle school principal and, most recently, as director of maintenance and transportation for Van Vleck Independent School District. SFC Ros was buried on May 29, 2015 in Roselawn Memorial Park in Van Vleck with full military honors. He is survived by his wife and four children. The Joe Ros Memorial Fund has been established through Prosperity Bank; for donation information, call 979-245-4200 or email kim.lankston@ prosperitybankusa.com.
TAPS (AS OF 08/3/15) SFC Morris Abercrombie, Life Member #1385, Retired, Sulphur Springs LTC Paul A. Allen, Life Member #2808, Retired, Gonzales Ms. Barbara Anderson, Associate Life Member #526, Granite Shoals Lt Col Benedict “Ben” Boerner, TXSG, Fort Worth COL (TX) Leo Berman, Retired, Tyler SGM Joe D. Castillo, Retired, San Antonio **PFC Juan Luis Castro, Trp A 1-112 CAV, San Antonio *MSG Jerry L. Coldiron, Life Member #22557, Retired, Humble Mr. Marvin L. Crabb, Retired, Denton COL Richard K. Day, Life Member #15072, Retired, San Angelo CW4 Orva J. McNaney, Life Member #18658, Retired, Killeen SFC Sidney G. Means, Life Member #9452, Retired, Lake Jackson Mr. Rodolfo Munoz, Sr., Life Member #6303, Retired, Helotes SGM Henry T. Murphy Jr., Life Member #3832, Retired, Granite Shoals LTC Jody E. Naron, Retired, Purmela Mr. Richard A. Ortiz, Life Member #4096, Retired, San Antonio **PFC Donovan B. Patin, 112th SC SPT CO, Howe Col Charles A. Quist, Life Member #1414, Retired, San Antonio
SFC Inocente Ramirez II, Life Member #19567, Retired, Lockhart SFC Allen S. Reed, Life Member #2485, Retired, Leander MSG Phillip A. Reichel, Life Member #13760, Retired, Waco MSgt Jose M. Rodriguez, Life Member #10850, Retired, Devine Mr. Jimmy L. Rogers, Life Member #14302, Retired, Bivins *SFC Joseph T. Ros, HSC 386th Engr Bn, Van Vleck **SPC Nathan L Schad, HHC 56th IBCT, Justin Mr. Manuel Serrano, Retired, Austin CMSgt Jack W. Speer, Life Member #620, Retired, Adkin SSG Kenneth W. Stallings, Life Member #27374, Retired, Tyler SSG Billy J. Wheeler, Life Member #4216, Retired, Austin *SPC Darryl W Williams Jr., B TROOP 1-112th CAV RGMT (REAR), Houston *MSG George A. Wilson, Life Member #10254, Retired, Harker Heights **PFC Jose A. Valenzuela Jr., TRP A 1-124 CAV RGMT, Arlington SGT (TX) Alan Yip, Texas State Guard, Houston *Had NGAT Life Insurance Policy **Had No-Cost Active Guard Policy of $1,000
If you are aware of the passing of a current or former National Guard member, please notify us by phone, by sending a letter to our office, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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NGAT PLANNING CALENDAR (As of 1 August 2015)
8-12 Aug EANGUS Conference, Indianapolis, IN 7 Sep Labor Day (NGAT Office Closed) 10-13 Sep NGAUS Conference, Nashville, TN 11 Sep Patriot Day 12 Oct Columbus Day (NGAT Office Closed) 17 Oct Central Texas National Guard Retiree Reunion, Elgin 26 Oct NGAT Board Meeting, Austin 11 Nov Veteran’s Day (NGAT Office Closed) 26-27 Nov Thanksgiving Observed (NGAT Office Closed) 7-11 Dec NGAT Legislative Visit, Washington, D.C. 13 Dec National Guard’s Birthday 24-31 Dec Christmas Holiday Observed (NGAT Office Closed)
News Years Day (NGAT Office Closed)