WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) and Congressmen Steve Womack (AR-03) and Bruce Westerman (AR-04) spent today with Arkansas National Guard members at Fort Bliss, Texas as the soldiers prepare for overseas deployment.
“It was an honor to join Arkansas National Guard members at Fort Bliss as they finalize their training and prepare for their overseas mission. These men and women are making tremendous sacrifices in defense of our nation and I am grateful for this opportunity to share my appreciation for their selfless service. I am proud of these soldiers and pleased to hear about their successful training. My prayers are with them and their families as they deploy and carry out their mission,” Boozman said.
“As the former commander of the first overseas deployment of a Guard battalion in the wake of September 11, it is truly an honor to join these brave Arkansans as they finalize mobilization activities. I have a special place in my heart for the Guard and know firsthand the challenges of the M-day soldier and airman. I’ve lived it and unequivocally believe in the Guard’s proven capability and in the ability of these ‘Warriors.’ Both are fundamental to ensuring a safe and successful America in a world where the proliferation of threat is unprecedented,” said Womack. “I am proud of these men and women and am praying for a successful mission and their families back home.”
“Keeping America and the world safe from harm through the projection of strength is no easy task. The men and women of our armed forces understand that personal sacrifices must be made in order to guarantee this safety. As the men and women of the Arkansas National Guard prepare to deploy overseas, I wanted to personally say thank you. It takes a person of great character to volunteer for service in the military and all of Arkansas should be proud of the service of their fellow citizens in uniform,” Westerman said.
Soldiers from the 1st Battalion, 153rd Infantry Regiment of the 39th Infantry Brigade are finalizing mobilization activities. The congressional delegation attended a historic Casing of the Colors and Patch Ceremony to honor the unit’s completion of mobilization and readiness to deploy.
Nearly 700 Arkansas National Guard members have been stationed at Fort Bliss since New Year’s Day as they complete stateside training before a deployment to the Horn of Africa in support of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM).