FEATURED STORIES

Fort Pickett, Virginia, will support the State Department in providing temporary housing and sustainment for Afghan Special Immigration Visa applicants, their families and other at-risk individuals, according to a formal announcement made Aug. 25, 2021, by the Department of Defense.
Fort Pickett to support Operation Allies Refuge
Aug. 26, 2021
Fort Pickett, Virginia, will support the State Department in providing temporary housing and sustainment for Afghan Special Immigration Visa applicants, their families and other at-risk individuals, according to a formal announcement made Aug. 25, 2021, by the Department of Defense.

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About the Virginia National Guard
July 1, 2020
The Virginia National Guard is a unique dual-status force with a federal mission to provide a combat reserve for the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force to fight our nation’s wars and a state mission to provide a response force that answers the call of the Governor to defend the commonwealth. The VNG traces the history and tradition of Citizen-Soldier service to the founding of Jamestown in 1607, and there has been a military presence defending Virginia ever since.

VIRGINIA NATIONAL GUARD NEWS

Virginia Army National Guard recruiters participate in the 3rd annual Heroes Day, a joint recruiting and awareness event for first responders September 11, 2021, at River Ridge Mall in Lynchburg, Virginia. The event included personnel from Lynchburg, Amherst, Bedford and Campbell Counties, as well as Virginia State Police. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Maj. Ben Melin)
Army National Guard Recruiters support Lynchburg 9/11 event 
Sept. 21, 2021
Virginia Army National Guard recruiters participated in Lynchburg’s 3rd Annual Heroes Day, a joint recruiting and awareness event for first responders held September 11, 2021, at River Ridge Mall in Lynchburg, Virginia. The event included personnel from Lynchburg, Amherst, Bedford and Campbell Counties, as well as Virginia State Police. 

Virginia National Guard Soldiers, Airmen and guests mark the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks with a remembrance ceremony Sept. 11, 2021, at the VNG Sergeant Bob Slaughter Headquarters at Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia. Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, retired Col. Todd Combee, former Virginia National Guard state chaplain, and retired Chief Warrant Officer 4 Al Barnes, the VNG command historian, provided remarks during the ceremony. The event also featured the dedication of a World Trade Center service elevator pulley, which will remain on permanent display at the headquarters as part of the VNG historical collection. The Troutville-based 29th Infantry Division Band provided ceremonial music for the occasion. Read more about the VNG historical collection at  https://go.usa.gov/x6dHp.
World Trade Center elevator pulley dedicated at VNG 9/11 remembrance ceremony
Sept. 20, 2021
Virginia National Guard Soldiers, Airmen and guests gathered to remember the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and dedicate a World Trade Center elevator pulley for historical display Sept. 11, 2021, at the VNG Sergeant Bob Slaughter Headquarters at Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia. 

Maj. Angel Pastrana is serving as a bilateral affairs officer for U.S. Southern Command at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia after graduating from the Spanish-immersive Command and General Staff College course at the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation in Fort Benning, Georgia.
VNG officer graduates from Spanish-immersive ILE, assumes post in Colombia
Sept. 13, 2021
A Virginia National Guard officer has taken up a unique post in South America after graduating from the Spanish-immersive Command and General Staff College course at the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation in Fort Benning, Georgia. 

Staff Sgt. Shenika Marable, an equal opportunity leader for Task Force Spartan and 29th Infantry Division, shows off a coin she received in commemoration of her honor graduate status from the Equal Opportunity Leaders Course she recently attended. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. True Thao)
Richmond native named honor graduate, Equal Opportunity Leader
Sept. 13, 2021
On her first deployment to Kuwait with the 29th Infantry Division in support of Operation Spartan Shield, Spc. Shenika Marable wistfully wished to be an equal opportunity leader (EOL) for the unit. Army regulations that required an EOL be a sergeant-promotable or higher rank dashed her hopes.

Master Sgt. Keona Newsom, 192nd Operations Group commander’s support staff noncommissioned officer in charge,  pauses for a photo on Aug. 24, 2021, at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, as she recalls events from the day she saved a child’s life. Newsom rescued a drowning four-year-old girl and performed CPR, saving her life. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Kellyann Elish)
Airman jumps into action using deployment training, resuscitates drowning child
Sept. 12, 2021
Situations can change in an instant. We’ve all heard that before. But for Master Sgt. Keona Newsom, a commander’s support staff noncommissioned officer in charge with the 192nd Operations Group, it was never more true than on July 27, 2021.

Chief Warrant Officer 3 Sandra Williams and her son, Spc. Alexander Williams, share a light moment during a recent visit. (U.S. photo by Sgt. Marc Loi)
29th ID mother, son deployed together
Sept. 11, 2021
When deployed Chief Warrant Officer 3 Sandra Williams misses her son, Alex, she doesn’t have to do math to figure out what time it is where he is located before calling him. Because they are deployed together in support of Operation Spartan Shield, the mother-son combo not only share the same moon – they share the same time zone.

Airmen assigned to the 192nd Wing, Virginia Air National Guard, participate in a combined running and ruck march event in remembrance of the 20th Anniversary of 9/11 on Sept. 11, 2021, at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia. Each member completed a combined distance of 20 kilometers of running or marching in teams of two to four or the full 20K individually. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Bryan Myhr)
Airmen remember 20th Anniversary of 9/11 with 20K
Sept. 11, 2021
In the pre-dawn hours of Sept. 11, 2021, approximately 40 Airmen assigned to the 192nd Wing, Virginia Air National Guard, gathered to remember the events of September 11th, 2001, at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia. In teams of up to four Airmen, or individually, they walked or ran a combined distance of 20 kilometers in remembrance of the 20th anniversary of the attack on the United States.

Virginia Army National Guard Spc. Toraj Rozbeh, who was born and raised in Afghanistan before immigrating to the United States, is deployed to Kuwait with the 29th Infantry Division. He is serving as an interpreter and cultural adviser for the Task Force Freedom command team during Operation Allies Refuge.
Afghan-American 29ID Soldier supports Afghanistan evacuation efforts
Sept. 10, 2021
U.S. Army Soldiers are embracing opportunities to support Afghanistan evacuation efforts in every way possible. Spc. Toraj Rozbeh, an Information Operations Specialist currently deployed to Kuwait with the Army National Guard’s 29th Infantry Division, Task Force Spartan, U.S. Army Central, is sharing and maximizing his ethnicity as an Afghan American to assist with building bridges and easing the processes throughout Operation Allies Refuge efforts.

U.S. National Guard Soldiers and Airmen from 13 states pose together following a Comprehensive Health and Wellness Leaders Course, held July 25-30, 2021, at the Army National Guard Readiness Center in Washington, D.C. (Courtesy Photo)
Virginia Soldiers attend Comprehensive Health and Wellness Course at NGB 
Sept. 7, 2021
Nine Virginia National Guard Soldiers traveled north to attend a Comprehensive Health and Wellness Leaders Course, held July 25-30, 2021, at the Army National Guard Readiness Center in Washington, D.C. The five-day course brought together more than 40 Soldiers and Airmen from 13 states and territories. The course aimed to equip leaders with effective tools for improving and managing the culture of health and wellness within their states and units. 

The Virginia National Guard's Virginia Beach-based 329th Regional Support Group Headquarters marks the start of their federal active duty mobilization with a departure ceremony Sept. 4, 2021, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Col. Todd Pegg and Command Sgt. Jerome Shelton, the 329th RSG command team, furled their organizational colors during the ceremony signifying the official start of the mobilization, and they will unfurl the colors when they arrive in the Middle East and officially take responsibility for their mission serving as the base operating support-integrator for multiple installations. The Troutville-based 29th Infantry Division Band provided music for the ceremony, and members of the Virginia Defense Force volunteered their time to provide traffic management for attendees. Watch the full video of the ceremony on YouTube at https://ngpa.us/15706. Read more about the 329th's mission at https://go.usa.gov/xMrZM. (U.S. National Guard photo by Cotton Puryear)
Virginia Beach-based 329th Regional Support Group begins federal duty, will deploy to Middle East
Sept. 7, 2021
The Virginia National Guard’s Virginia Beach-based 329th Regional Support Group Headquarters marked the start of its federal active-duty mobilization with a departure ceremony Sept. 4, 2021, at the State Military Reservation in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

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READY AND RESILIENT RESOURCES

Readiness and Resiliency Information Resource Page provides resources and education to all Soldiers, Airmen, Virginia Defense Force personnel, family members and civilian employees to promote readiness, well-being, resilience and suicide prevention. The end state is a healthy organization that is resilient, knowledgeable regarding high risk behaviors, educated on stress reduction measures and aware of available service member, family and employee support network resources.

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