NEWS | Dec. 5, 2017

Governor, First Lady host receptions at Virginia’s Executive Mansion

By Cotton Puryear | Virginia National Guard Public Affairs Office

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe and First Lady of Virginia Dorothy McAuliffe hosted receptions for the Virginia National Guard Dec. 2 and 3, 2017, at Virginia’s Executive Mansion in Richmond, Virginia, to recognize the Soldiers and Airmen who returned from federal active duty deployments this year and their families as well as families of those personnel who are currently deployed. Virginia Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran, Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, Virginia National Guard senior leaders and members of the Virginia National Guard Family Programs Office joined the McAuliffes in thanking the Soldiers, Airmen and their families for their service, sacrifice and support for the missions around the world.

The Virginia National Guard has mobilized nearly 1,600 Soldiers and Airmen for 16 different federal active duty overseas deployments since January 2014 when McAuliffe took office.

Since January 2014, the Virginia National Guard has mobilized nearly 2,570 Soldiers, Airmen and members of the Virginia Defense Force on state active duty to respond to 12 different incidents of hurricanes, winter storms and flooding across the Commonwealth. The Virginia National Guard also had more than 500 on duty for security operations in Charlottesville on Aug. 12, and deployed more than 500 Soldiers to assist with hurricane recovery operations in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Additionally, the Virginia National Guard had nearly 40 Soldiers and VDF members conduct cyber vulnerability assessments in seven different Virginia localities.

The following units returned from federal active duty in 2017:

The Virginia National Guard’s 116th Military Engagement Team marked the official completion of their overseas mission Jan. 9, 2017, during a Transfer of Authority ceremony held at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. During the ceremony, the 116th MET passed the mission to the Kentucky National Guard’s 149th Military Engagement Team. During their nine-month overseas mobilization, the 116th MET was based in Kuwait, with Soldiers also training in Jordan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Oman. The 26-Soldier team conducted 53 engagements with military members from 12 countries, including Uzbekistan, Lebanon, the United Kingdom and Tajikistan. In Jordan, team members completed more than 150 engagements with leaders of the Kingdom’s military. Collectively, the team flew more than 1 million kilometers, drove more than 100,000 kilometers and spent more than 1,200 man days on mission, traveling throughout the region and working with military members of partner nations.

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