2019 milestone year for District of Columbia National Guard’s Capital Guardians

| District of Columbia National Guard Public Affairs | Dec. 30, 2019

WASHINGTON —

The world is preparing to ring in the New Year and welcome in 2020. As 2019 comes to a close, it proved to be a year full of training, exercises and new leadership for the District of Columbia National Guard. Check out a summary of 2019 accomplishments and milestones pulled together from Public Affairs coverage.

The DCNG’s 1-226th General Support Aviation Battalion supported a life-saving medical evacuation Jan. 4, 2019, in Washington, D.C. The battalion received a phone call with the request and quickly responded, providing critically needed transport for a patient mid-surgery. Check out video coverage here

Capital Guardians supported the 2019 Women's March, the task force included approximately 250 District of Columbia Soldiers and Airmen providing crowd management. The Task Force worked alongside the Metropolitan Police Department to ensure the safety of people in the downtown area. The task force was formed at the request of the Metropolitan Police Department to provide crowd management and traffic control in support of the Women’s March on January 19 in Washington, D.C. Check out coverage here

The District of Columbia National Guard and the National Armed Forces of Burkina Faso signed a partnership agreement on Feb 1, 2019 in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, formalizing D.C. and the West African nation as partners in the Department of Defense’s State Partnership Program. The partnership with the National Armed Forces of Burkina Faso will lay the foundation for a successful, long-term relationship by sharing expertise in emergency and disaster response, enhancing border security and strengthening cooperation in peacekeeping operations and readiness. Check out coverage here

In May, more than 250 D.C. Air National Guard Airmen returned from a successful deployment to the Indo-Pacific region in support of a theater security package designed to ensure warfighter capability and foster partnerships in the area. While the majority of the deployment was spent at Kunsan Air Base, the DCANG Airmen were able to re-deploy to the Philippines for the seventh iteration of Bilateral Air Contingent Exchange-Philippines, or BACE-P, at Cesar Basa Air Base for 12 days of bilateral training between the U.S. and Philippine Air Forces. This year marked the first time the U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcons were folded into the training. Check out coverage here

Soldiers and Airmen from the DCNG visited Kingston, Jamaica on May 15, 2019 to participate in a humanitarian assistance and disaster response table top event with the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM). Check out coverage here

The District of Columbia celebrated 217 years of service as “Capitol Guardians,” at its annual gala May 9, 2019 at the DCNG Guard armory. The gala, hosted by Maj. Gen. William J. Walker, commanding general, DCNG was an opportunity to reflect on past and future opportunities. Marking the occasion included United States Ambassador to Burkina Faso Andrew Young, Jamaican Ambassador to the United States H.E. Audrey Marks and General Stephen W. Wilson, U.S. Air Force Vice Chief of Staff. Check out coverage here

Approximately 800 DCNG Guardsmen were activated to augment local authority agencies for the Independence Day celebration in the National Capital Region (NCR) July 4, 2019. Guardsmen supported local authorities by providing perimeter security, crowd management, and traffic control, among other support activities. Check out coverage here.

The District of Columbia National Guard's 257th Army Band traveled to Burkina Faso in support of the National Guard Bureau's State Partnership Program in July. 257th Band Team Leader Sgt. 1st Class Fred Marcellus shares his experience with using music to build partnerships with the National Armed Forces of Burkina Faso‘s military band. Check out video coverage here

The District of Columbia Air National Guard officially welcomed its first-ever Hispanic deputy commanding general, Col. Mark Maldonado July 20. Maldonado was born in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico, where he was raised by his grandparents. As the deputy commanding general for Air at Joint Force Headquarters D.C. National Guard, Maldonado is the principal advisor to the commanding general of the DCNG and manages more than 1,200 members of the DCANG while ensuring all DCANG units maintain the required readiness levels for when the nation calls upon them to serve, in times of need. Check out coverage here

The DCNG honored its heritage through their 257th Army Band’s 2019 summer concert series, “Of the People, For the People.” Known as The Band of the Nation’s Capital, the concert band selected music from the award-winning Hamilton: An American Musical to showcase the historical founding of our nation through combined traditional music, spoken word and the modern genre of hip-hop. Not only does the musical tie-in to the early U.S. history, specific parts of the production focus on the establishment of the District of Columbia. President Thomas Jefferson, who is one of the characters portrayed in the musical, established the DCNG in 1802. Check out coverage here

U.S. Air Force Airmen from the 113th Wing, Air National Guard, District of Columbia, the 126th Air Refueling Wing, Illinois ANG, and 52nd Operations Group, Detachment 1, conducted training alongside members of the Polish air force for Aviation Rotation 19.4, in support of Operation Atlantic Resolve at Lask Air Base, Poland Sept. 7-24, 2019. Check out coverage here

The DCNG focused on suicide prevention at the Suicide Prevention Awareness Month event Sept. 18. With a theme of Small Steps Save Lives, the event focused on educating members of the DCNG on safety precautions service members and their families can take to reduce the risk of suicide. #BeThere and taking the time to establish trust with those who seek help are critical components to helping break the stigma of getting mental health assistance. Check out coverage here

The DCNG supported the Washington National's World Series victory parade with an F-16 fighter aircraft flyover, military band performance and Civil Support Team assistance Nov 2, 2019. The District of Columbia Air National Guard’s 113th Fighter Wing kicked-off the parade with an F-16 fighter aircraft flyover. The 257th Band lead the parade with several patriotic arrangements. The 33rd CST supported DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department as part of the Joint Hazardous Assessment Team. Check out coverage here

In addition to supporting the Marine Corps Marathon, the DCNG’s 33rd Civil Support Team provided District officials support during the historic 2019 Major League Baseball World Series games at the National’s Stadium Oct 25-27, 2019. They worked around the clock with civil authorities to enhance response capabilities through their communications, survey, technical decontamination and analytical functions. Check out coverage here

The 33rd CST also was evaluated as fully trained on 12 essential collective tasks after conducting a Training Proficiency Evaluation at Fort Lee in Colonial Heights, Va. The evaluation was supervised by U.S. Army North’s Civil Support Readiness Group-East in order to validate the unit’s level of readiness. Check out coverage here

For the first time ever, 113th Wing participated in the exercise Amalgam Dart at McGhee Tyson Air National Guard Base near Knoxville, Tenn., in November. The exercise was designed to test NORAD’s ability to deploy an Integrated Air Defense System and execute its aerospace warning and aerospace control missions at a non-designated Aerospace Control Alert facility. A deployable IADS capability allows for a tailored response which can be deployed as needed to support local, state and federal authorities to ensure the strongest possible defense of the homelands. Check out coverage here

To commemorate and honor Veterans Day, the DCNG, DC Department of Employment Services (DOES), DC Department of Human Resources (DCHR) and the Mayor's Office of Veterans Affairs (MOVA) partnered to facilitate the 3rd annual DC Hires Vets Employment Expo. The event was held at the DCNG Armory Nov 15, 2019. The venue's purpose was to assemble veteran friendly employers, apprenticeship programs, training providers, transitional housing grantees and other miscellaneous veteran service organizations and give them the opportunity to showcase their respective organizations, employment opportunities, services and resources to our veteran and veteran spouse population in one central location.

The DCNG recognized excellence during its annual awards and decorations ceremony Dec 8, 2019 at the D.C. National Guard Armory. The ceremony’s theme was “Once a Capital Guardian, Always a Capital Guardian” and included a joint color guard, ceremonial marching elements from the D.C. Army and Air National Guard as well as performances by the 257th Army Band. The ceremony recognized unit-level and individual award winners from both the District of Columbia Army and Air National Guard. Check out coverage here

49 Cadets from the Capital Guardian Youth Challenge Academy, or CGYCA, graduated in a completion ceremony at the District of Columbia National Guard’s Armory Dec 10, 2019. Located in Laurel, Md., the academy is a life intervention, dropout reintegration, and GED preparatory program, run by the District of Columbia National Guard in partnership with the Office of the State Superintendent of Education for the District of Columbia. Check out coverage here

Maj. Gen. William J. Walker, Commanding General of the District of Columbia National Guard hosted Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Minister of Defense Lemma Mergesa and Chief of the General Staff of the Ethiopia National Defense Force Gen. Adem Mohammed here at the DCNG Armory in December. Maj. Gen. Walker and Minister Lemma Mergesa discussed the DCNG’s unique role as the National Guard’s only federal unit, reporting directly to the Secretary of the Army. Check out photos here.

The 33rd Civil Support Team, District of Columbia National Guard, supported the National Christmas Tree Lighting at the Ellipse in President's Park in front of the White House, Dec 5, 2019. They work in conjunction with local first responders, the Fire Department, the Secret Service and the FBI in the National Capital Region. Check out photos here

The DCNG recognized excellence during its annual awards and decorations ceremony at the D.C. National Guard Armory Dec. 8. The ceremony’s theme was “Once a Capital Guardian, Always a Capital Guardian” and included a joint color guard, ceremonial marching elements from the D.C. Army and Air National Guard as well as performances by the 257th Army Band. The ceremony recognized unit-level and individual award winners from both the District of Columbia Army and Air National Guard. Check out coverage here

Cadets from the Capital Guardian Youth Challenge Academy, or CGYCA, have something to celebrate. 49 members of the program graduated in a completion ceremony at the District of Columbia National Guard’s Armory Dec. 10. Check out coverage here

As part of a French Delegation visit, static displays manned by members of the 372nd Military Police Battalion and 33rd Civil Support Team educated visitors on the DCNG crowd control and civil support missions. During the demonstrations, a visiting Jamaica Defence Force Health Services Corps professionals participated in the static display event. As part of the State Partnership Program, the healthcare professionals were participating in training that included infectious diseases, ambulance specs, mortuary affairs, and medical evacuations. Check out coverage here

Looking to the future, 2020 will bring new challenges and amazing opportunities. The District of Columbia National Guard kicked-off Presidential Inauguration planning in October in preparation for the 2020 Presidential Inauguration. The DCNG Capital Guardians are a motivated and focused force that is trained and equipped to meet the expectations of the Department of Defense, our Federal and District of Columbia government partners, and the needs of our fellow citizens.