RICHMOND, Va. -- Growing up, Spc. TreyVon Meekins was an honor roll student, participated in extracurricular activities and was an active member of his church. He says faith always played an important role in his life and has shaped his personal values and commitment to service.
He found the National Guard a few years after high school. After caring for his ailing grandmother until her death in 2013, he worked in the civilian sector until making the decision to enlist in the Virginia Army National Guard.
“I picked the National Guard because it came with college, and when I was younger, I would hear the Governor declare a state of emergency and the Guard would come in to assist those devastated by disaster,” Meekins explained. “I knew from home I couldn't help, so I wanted to join the army of guys who could.”
Meekins initially enlisted as a 94A Land Combat Electronic Missile System Repairer and was assigned to Bravo Company, 429th Brigade Support Battalion, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team. Anxious for promotion opportunities, Meekins became a 94E Radio and Communications Security Repairer, and will attend the U.S. Army’s Basic Leader Course in the coming months and hopes to make sergeant shortly thereafter. His goal, he says, is to complete a full career in the National Guard, earn the rank of sergeant first class and maybe become a warrant officer. Meekins currently works full-time for the Virginia National Guard as a technician at the Combined Support Maintenance Shops, or CSMS.
Last year, as the COVID-19 pandemic raged across the nation, Meekins volunteered to support the VNG’s COVID-19 testing mission. He voluntarily extended those orders for over ten months, and is currently helping to support the VNG’s vaccination efforts.
“The hardest part is being away from family,” he said.
Despite the challenges of being apart from his family, Meekins said he’s incredibly proud to serve in the National Guard.
“[I like] knowing that when civilians are in trouble, they feel at rest because the Guard is there,” he said.
On diversity and observances like African American History Month, Meekins said, “growing up I never saw color, and joining the military was the same,” and that “African American History Month is important. It focuses on the community, and teaches us the effect African Americans have had on our world.”
February is African American History Month and this month, the Virginia National Guard is highlighting stories from the Soldiers, Airmen, VDF members and civilians who make up our organization.