Latest News from the Virginia National Guard
  • FORT PICKETT, Va. — Spc. Adam Sotelo was named the 2014 Virginia National Guard Soldier of the Year, and Sgt. John Fracker was named Noncommissioned Officer of the Year March 29, 2015, at Fort Pickett, Va. Sotelo, an Arlington resident assigned to Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, and Fracker, who resides in Boones Mill and is assigned to Company C, 1st Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment, 116th IBCT, earned the honors after competing in the two-day Best Warrior Competition at Fort Pickett. Eighteen Soldiers and noncommissioned officers representing the Virginia Army Guard’s major subordinate commands were evaluated on the Army Physical Fitness Test, marksmanship, land navigation, various Army Warrior Tasks and an appearance board. […]

    116th IBCT Soldier, NCO earn top honors at Va. Guard Best Warrior competition

    FORT PICKETT, Va. — Spc. Adam Sotelo was named the 2014 Virginia National Guard Soldier of the Year, and Sgt. John Fracker was named Noncommissioned Officer of the Year March 29, 2015, at Fort Pickett, Va. Sotelo, an Arlington resident assigned to Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, and Fracker, who resides in Boones Mill and is assigned to Company C, 1st Battalion, 116th Infantry Regiment, 116th IBCT, earned the honors after competing in the two-day Best Warrior Competition at Fort Pickett. Eighteen Soldiers and noncommissioned officers representing the Virginia Army Guard’s major subordinate commands were evaluated on the Army Physical Fitness Test, marksmanship, land navigation, various Army Warrior Tasks and an appearance board. […]

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  • NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — More than 200 Airmen from the 192nd and 1st Fighter Wing Maintenance and Operations Groups participated in the 40th anniversary of the Red Flag combat training exercise Jan. 26 to Feb. 13, 2015, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. Annually, Red Flag brings together assets from the United Kingdom, Australia, and across multiple branches of the U.S. military to train together and enhance the capabilities of a coalition response to global threats as a united front. “Red Flag is designed to simulate the first few weeks of a major theater campaign”, said, U.S. Air Force Col. Pat McAtee, 192nd Operations Group commander. “Over the past 40 years we’ve proven these challenging and realistic scenarios […]

    192nd and 1st Fighter Wings perform combat training at Red Flag

    NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — More than 200 Airmen from the 192nd and 1st Fighter Wing Maintenance and Operations Groups participated in the 40th anniversary of the Red Flag combat training exercise Jan. 26 to Feb. 13, 2015, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. Annually, Red Flag brings together assets from the United Kingdom, Australia, and across multiple branches of the U.S. military to train together and enhance the capabilities of a coalition response to global threats as a united front. “Red Flag is designed to simulate the first few weeks of a major theater campaign”, said, U.S. Air Force Col. Pat McAtee, 192nd Operations Group commander. “Over the past 40 years we’ve proven these challenging and realistic scenarios […]

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  • WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — Virginia National Guard field artillery Soldiers explained the capabilities of the M119A2 howitzer, answered questions about the Guard and took part in a demonstration of 400 years of Virginia artillery during the Military Through the Ages event March 21, 2015, at Jamestown Settlement in Williamsburg, Va. Hundreds of re-enactors portrayed military organizations from Roman times, the medieval period, Hundred Years’ War, War of the Roses, French and Indian War, American Revolution, War of 1812 and American Civil War as well as World Wars I and II, the Vietnam War and the Falklands War with Soldiers from the Hampton-based Battery B, 1st Battalion, 111th Field Artillery, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team representing the modern military. “To me it […]

    116th IBCT artillery Soldiers represent modern military at Jamestown history event

    WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — Virginia National Guard field artillery Soldiers explained the capabilities of the M119A2 howitzer, answered questions about the Guard and took part in a demonstration of 400 years of Virginia artillery during the Military Through the Ages event March 21, 2015, at Jamestown Settlement in Williamsburg, Va. Hundreds of re-enactors portrayed military organizations from Roman times, the medieval period, Hundred Years’ War, War of the Roses, French and Indian War, American Revolution, War of 1812 and American Civil War as well as World Wars I and II, the Vietnam War and the Falklands War with Soldiers from the Hampton-based Battery B, 1st Battalion, 111th Field Artillery, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team representing the modern military. “To me it […]

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  • FORT PICKETT, Va. – Soldiers, Marines and members of Fort Pickett’s Directorate of Plans, Training and Security and Directorate of Public Works took part in a special tree felling operation March 19-20, 2015, at Fort Pickett, Va. With coordination and guidance from the Natural Resources Section, Directorate of Public Works, Soldiers from the Fort Eustis-based 74th Engineer Dive Detachment, 33rd Engineer Battalion and Marines from the Camp Lejeune-based 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division participated in felling a number of trees around Fort Pickett. The operation was designed to refresh basic demolition assembly skills and to train on emplacement and employment of hasty obstacles. “There are three different areas that Fort Pickett wanted us to fell trees, we’re in […]

    Soldiers, Marines clear trees and create habitats at Fort Pickett

    FORT PICKETT, Va. – Soldiers, Marines and members of Fort Pickett’s Directorate of Plans, Training and Security and Directorate of Public Works took part in a special tree felling operation March 19-20, 2015, at Fort Pickett, Va. With coordination and guidance from the Natural Resources Section, Directorate of Public Works, Soldiers from the Fort Eustis-based 74th Engineer Dive Detachment, 33rd Engineer Battalion and Marines from the Camp Lejeune-based 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division participated in felling a number of trees around Fort Pickett. The operation was designed to refresh basic demolition assembly skills and to train on emplacement and employment of hasty obstacles. “There are three different areas that Fort Pickett wanted us to fell trees, we’re in […]

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  • BLACKSTONE, Va. – Securing more than $3,000 of issued military gear and equipment at homes can be a challenge, but for 2,400 Soldiers across the Virginia Army National Guard that’s about to change. As part of the $1.2 million dollar statewide effort to reduce property loss, more than 150 ventilated equipment lockers were installed March 18, 2015, at the Blackstone Readiness Center, Blackstone, Va. The Va. Guard’s Fort Pickett-based Directorate of Logistics began installing 2,418 lockers in January, beginning in Gate City, Va., and moving east to install anywhere from 50 to 200 lockers in 19 different facilities across the Virginia Guard. “A few months ago we put a call out to the field and asked what units needed lockers,” […]

    Equipment, clothing secured in new lockers at 19 readiness centers

    BLACKSTONE, Va. – Securing more than $3,000 of issued military gear and equipment at homes can be a challenge, but for 2,400 Soldiers across the Virginia Army National Guard that’s about to change. As part of the $1.2 million dollar statewide effort to reduce property loss, more than 150 ventilated equipment lockers were installed March 18, 2015, at the Blackstone Readiness Center, Blackstone, Va. The Va. Guard’s Fort Pickett-based Directorate of Logistics began installing 2,418 lockers in January, beginning in Gate City, Va., and moving east to install anywhere from 50 to 200 lockers in 19 different facilities across the Virginia Guard. “A few months ago we put a call out to the field and asked what units needed lockers,” […]

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  • SANDSTON, Va. — The Virginia National Guard has begun the design phase of a new 102,000 square foot state headquarters facility to be built on a 13.6-acre site in the northern section of Defense Supply Center Richmond in Chesterfield County, Va. The new headquarters will cost approximately $30 million and construction should be completed by February 2018. It will provide workspace for the Adjutant General of Virginia, the Virginia National Guard Joint Staff and Air National Guard Staff currently located at Mullins Readiness Center in Sandston. “We are incredibly excited to enter the design phase of the new state headquarters, and we look forward to moving into a state-of-the-art facility,” said Brig. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of […]

    Virginia National Guard begins design phase of new state headquarters

    SANDSTON, Va. — The Virginia National Guard has begun the design phase of a new 102,000 square foot state headquarters facility to be built on a 13.6-acre site in the northern section of Defense Supply Center Richmond in Chesterfield County, Va. The new headquarters will cost approximately $30 million and construction should be completed by February 2018. It will provide workspace for the Adjutant General of Virginia, the Virginia National Guard Joint Staff and Air National Guard Staff currently located at Mullins Readiness Center in Sandston. “We are incredibly excited to enter the design phase of the new state headquarters, and we look forward to moving into a state-of-the-art facility,” said Brig. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of […]

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  • LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va. — Virginia National Guard Airmen from the 192nd Intelligence Squadron work side-by-side with the active duty Air Force every day at Langley Air Force Base. They provide critical intelligence products to support war fighting operations around the world, and several of them took part in a capabilities demonstration for local and national news media hosted March 17, 2015, by the 480th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing. “ISR provides supported commanders with decision advantage,” explained Col. Timothy D. Haugh, commander of the 480th ISR Wing. “It makes sure they have the best available information for whatever decision they have to make from peacetime to the execution of combat operations.” Because the demand for information has grown […]

    Virginia Guard Airmen supporting global operations at Langley AFB

    LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va. — Virginia National Guard Airmen from the 192nd Intelligence Squadron work side-by-side with the active duty Air Force every day at Langley Air Force Base. They provide critical intelligence products to support war fighting operations around the world, and several of them took part in a capabilities demonstration for local and national news media hosted March 17, 2015, by the 480th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing. “ISR provides supported commanders with decision advantage,” explained Col. Timothy D. Haugh, commander of the 480th ISR Wing. “It makes sure they have the best available information for whatever decision they have to make from peacetime to the execution of combat operations.” Because the demand for information has grown […]

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  • FORT PICKETT, Va. — The Army Knowledge Online email service is set to completely shut down March 31, 2015. Any messages sent to AKO email addresses will be forwarded to enterprise email accounts until June 30, 2015, after which all messages will be returned as undeliverable. The U.S. Army established AKO in the late 1990s to provide online information services for U.S. Army personnel. AKO later extended services to retirees and family members. Services included email, cloud-based collaboration, professional forums, a white pages directory and direct access to several government services websites. To achieve modernization goals that Department of the Army Secretary John McHugh outlined in an official memorandum, April 26, 2013, the AKO infrastructure and provided services have either been upgraded […]

    AKO email to shut down

    FORT PICKETT, Va. — The Army Knowledge Online email service is set to completely shut down March 31, 2015. Any messages sent to AKO email addresses will be forwarded to enterprise email accounts until June 30, 2015, after which all messages will be returned as undeliverable. The U.S. Army established AKO in the late 1990s to provide online information services for U.S. Army personnel. AKO later extended services to retirees and family members. Services included email, cloud-based collaboration, professional forums, a white pages directory and direct access to several government services websites. To achieve modernization goals that Department of the Army Secretary John McHugh outlined in an official memorandum, April 26, 2013, the AKO infrastructure and provided services have either been upgraded […]

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  • FORT LEE, Va. – Soldiers assigned to the Virginia National Guard’s Fort Pickett-based 34th Civil Support Team supportrd more than 39 Soldiers from the Fort Lee-based 111th Quartermaster Company, 82nd Special Troops Battalion by training mortuary affairs personnel on the use of chemical detection equipment during the Joint Mortuary Affairs Centers’ Quick Reaction Test field training exercise of March 12, 2015, at Fort Lee, Va. U.S. Army mortuary affairs Soldiers perform duties similar to a civilian mortician in preparing remains for burial. In addition, they recover and collect remains—even those contaminated by chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear weapons or materials. “We received a request to support the Joint Mortuary Affairs Center,” said Capt. Thomas Valentine, survey team leader, 34th CST. “They needed [Chemical, Biological, Radiological […]

    34th CST shares information, experience during active duty mortuary affairs exercise

    FORT LEE, Va. – Soldiers assigned to the Virginia National Guard’s Fort Pickett-based 34th Civil Support Team supportrd more than 39 Soldiers from the Fort Lee-based 111th Quartermaster Company, 82nd Special Troops Battalion by training mortuary affairs personnel on the use of chemical detection equipment during the Joint Mortuary Affairs Centers’ Quick Reaction Test field training exercise of March 12, 2015, at Fort Lee, Va. U.S. Army mortuary affairs Soldiers perform duties similar to a civilian mortician in preparing remains for burial. In addition, they recover and collect remains—even those contaminated by chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear weapons or materials. “We received a request to support the Joint Mortuary Affairs Center,” said Capt. Thomas Valentine, survey team leader, 34th CST. “They needed [Chemical, Biological, Radiological […]

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  • FORT A. P. HILL, Va. – The latest round of winter snow to hit Virginia would not stop six months of planning during the March drill. Equipment operators from Company A, 116th Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team had a delayed start because unsafe road conditions made it difficult to get to the readiness center. Engineers from Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 37th Engineer Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division were already in place and ready for 116th engineers to arrive to begin combined equipment operators training at Fort A.P. Hill March 6-8, 2015. Engineers from the Fort Bragg-based 37th Engineer Battalion arrived in between Virginia snowstorms to conduct their own training and prepare for arrival […]

    Virginia National Guard engineers build ties with 82nd Airborne engineers

    FORT A. P. HILL, Va. – The latest round of winter snow to hit Virginia would not stop six months of planning during the March drill. Equipment operators from Company A, 116th Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team had a delayed start because unsafe road conditions made it difficult to get to the readiness center. Engineers from Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 37th Engineer Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division were already in place and ready for 116th engineers to arrive to begin combined equipment operators training at Fort A.P. Hill March 6-8, 2015. Engineers from the Fort Bragg-based 37th Engineer Battalion arrived in between Virginia snowstorms to conduct their own training and prepare for arrival […]

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  • FORT PICKETT, Va. — Virginia Army National Guard leaders are reminding enlisted Soldiers of all ranks that completing U.S. Army Structured Self Development courses is a top priority for the organization, as well as the individual Soldiers. “The onus is on the Soldier,” explained Command Sgt. Maj. Carl Holcomb, the Virginia Army National Guard command sergeant major. “The commanders are trying to communicate to the Soldiers that they need to do SSD if they want to get to the next rank and get promoted in the Virginia Guard.” SSD is online training that enhances skills, knowledge, behaviors and experience, according to the U.S. Army. SSD is a supplement to the Noncommissioned Officer Education System and affects promotions because all Soldiers […]

    Va. Guard Soldiers are reminded to make the time, effort to complete SSD courses

    FORT PICKETT, Va. — Virginia Army National Guard leaders are reminding enlisted Soldiers of all ranks that completing U.S. Army Structured Self Development courses is a top priority for the organization, as well as the individual Soldiers. “The onus is on the Soldier,” explained Command Sgt. Maj. Carl Holcomb, the Virginia Army National Guard command sergeant major. “The commanders are trying to communicate to the Soldiers that they need to do SSD if they want to get to the next rank and get promoted in the Virginia Guard.” SSD is online training that enhances skills, knowledge, behaviors and experience, according to the U.S. Army. SSD is a supplement to the Noncommissioned Officer Education System and affects promotions because all Soldiers […]

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  • FORT PICKETT, Va. – Soldiers from the Fort Pickett-based 183rd Regiment, Regional Training Institute provided an Active Threat/Workplace Violence Awareness class to more than 30 Virginia National Guard Soldiers and Fort Pickett employees Feb. 20, 2015. “Our goal for the class was to draw attention to all the recent incidents targeting schools, places of worship, workplace violence, shopping malls and movie theaters and assist all sections within the Virginia National Guard in developing plans to identify, prevent, respond to and mitigate active threats,” explained Sgt. 1st Class Sammy Jones, a Military Police Officer course instructor who taught the class alongside Master Sgt. Brian Coleman. The class included a range of topics, including how to define an active shooter or threat, […]

    Workplace Violence Awareness course taught at Fort Pickett

    FORT PICKETT, Va. – Soldiers from the Fort Pickett-based 183rd Regiment, Regional Training Institute provided an Active Threat/Workplace Violence Awareness class to more than 30 Virginia National Guard Soldiers and Fort Pickett employees Feb. 20, 2015. “Our goal for the class was to draw attention to all the recent incidents targeting schools, places of worship, workplace violence, shopping malls and movie theaters and assist all sections within the Virginia National Guard in developing plans to identify, prevent, respond to and mitigate active threats,” explained Sgt. 1st Class Sammy Jones, a Military Police Officer course instructor who taught the class alongside Master Sgt. Brian Coleman. The class included a range of topics, including how to define an active shooter or threat, […]

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