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27th Light Infantry, NYS Army National Guard

Elements of the New York and the Vermont National Guard face lengthy and hazardous tours in overseas war zones for the first time since World War II.

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Photo/Audio Diary
An Iraq Diary
Maj. Eric Olsen is chaplain to a battalion of the New York Army National Guard stationed in the Sunni Triangle north of Baghdad. His thirty-part audio diary begins in 2004. He and his family live in Saranac Lake.
WW II-era barracks being demolished to make way for new housing. Photo: Army Corps of Engineers
WW II-era barracks being demolished to make way for new housing. Photo: Army Corps of Engineers

New construction on Drum will serve Guard, Reserves

Senators Schumer and Gillibrand announced last week $46.4 million in funding for new construction at Fort Drum. The new facilities will help National Guard and Reserve troops with their training. Joanna Richards has the story.  Go to full article

Aid reaches last Vermont towns

Aid reached one of the last isolated towns in Vermont yesterday morning.
A Vermont National Guard vehicle with water was the first in to the village of Wardsboro.
The small town in the southern Green Mountains had been isolated since flooding struck on Sunday.

The Guard has been using trucks and choppers where necessary to get supplies to stranded residents. Aid reached 13 other towns Tuesday night.

A convoy of about 30 trucks finally made it through to Killington Mt. yesterday morning.

Rob Mitchell, state editor for the Rutland Herald, says the supply effort really ramped up yesterday, just as isolated towns were beginning to run out of essential supplies and medicines.
He spoke with Nora Flaherty on All Before 5 yesterday:  Go to full article

Encouraging words for Saranac Lake veterans' center

The Department of Defense is focusing more attention on post traumatic stress disorder, estimating that over 300,000 veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD. Thousands of them are "civilian soldiers" -- members of the Army Reserves and National Guard.

The Department of Veterans Affairs says combat vets are more likely to commit crimes or suffer effects of psychological trauma. Military officials are actively looking for new ways to help them heal and rejoin civilian life.A group in Saranac Lake hopes Patriot Hills, a new vets' center proposed for the village, will be a good fit. This week, they got some encouraging words from the Army national Guard's medical commander. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article
The Glens Falls Armory, pictured on a 1907 postcard (source: Wikipedia)

Glens Falls Armory up for auction, again

The Glens Falls Armory goes back on the auction block next month. The 115-year-old stone building--complete with turret--has been up for auction twice since the National...  Go to full article
Maj. General Joseph Taluto will retire from the New York National Guard next month

Maj. Gen. Taluto from Washington County drops bid to lead Army National Guard

A North Country officer chosen by the White House to head the Army National Guard has withdrawn his name from consideration. Major General Joseph Taluto, who lives in Fort...  Go to full article
National Guard soldiers and Civil War reenactors bear the remains of a New York soldier (Photos:  Brian Mann)

A Civil War soldier lost at Antietam, returned to New York

Yesterday marked the 147th anniversary of the Civil War battle at Antietam in Maryland. It was the single bloodiest day in US history, with more than 20,000 men killed or...  Go to full article
Chaplain Eric Olsen has ministered to National Guard soldiers all over the world, including a deployment to Iraq. (PHOTOS:  E. Olsen)

Chaplain shortage hits North Country Guard

The National Guard has mostly solved its recruiting problem. Most units around the country are at full strength, after being hit hard by the pressures of the wars in Iraq...  Go to full article
A chaplain shortage is hitting the National Guard

North Country priest serves double duty in New York's Air National Guard

Yesterday we reported that New York's National Guard is struggling to hire enough clergy to serve as part-time chaplains. The problem reflects an aging clergy and also a...  Go to full article
Captain Phillip Esposito, who was murdered in Iraq, with daughter Madeline and wife Siobhan (Photo provided)

A double homicide in Iraq slows the rise of New York top general to national post

The top soldier in New York state is facing new questions and new scrutiny following his nomination by President Obama to head the Army National Guard. Major General Joseph...  Go to full article

Facing rising soldier suicide rate, vet groups call for more mental health help

Last week, the U.S. Army announced 2008 saw the highest soldier suicide rate on record. Now, the news is even worse. The Army believes 24 more soldiers committed suicide...  Go to full article

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