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NEWS | Oct. 27, 2023

Guard Soldiers honored with Governor’s Outstanding Unit citation for Southwest Border support

By Sgt. 1st. Class Benjamin Crane, Kentucky National Guard Public Affairs Office

Governor Andy Beshear honored Soldiers from seven Kentucky National Guard units who served along the southwest border since 2020 at the Capitol Rotunda, Oct 26.

Representatives from each unit received the Governors Outstanding Unit Citations for their service.

They represented the more than 750 Soldiers who have supported civilian law enforcement agencies along the southwest border.

During the ceremony, Gov. Beshear thanked the Soldiers for their service to the Commonwealth and added that the nation is safer because of their efforts while deployed.

“Border security is national security, and you all have been there to serve our nation in a mission where we needed you. For that, I am grateful. Your Commonwealth is grateful, but your country is also grateful,” Beshear said.

He added:

“Your work has made it easier for Customs and Border Patrol agents to carry out their law enforcement duties.”

For those that have been along the border putting in the work, like Army Maj. Nathaniel Brown, commander for Charlie Company, 1/376th Aviation Battalion, getting the recognition from the governor was impactful.

“Getting recognized by the governor is significant, especially for all the Soldiers that have sacrificed time away from home in order to support this mission,” he said. “For me personally, it is bittersweet, it marks the end of my time as the Charlie Company commander but it was great listening to our governor praise our Soldiers. That is an experience I am sure that none will forget any time soon.”

Brown has been deployed along the southwest border three times in the past ten years, but two of those times were within the last three years.

“Overall, my experience in each of my trips to the border has been eye-opening. Each time has been different and held different challenges, but the issues at the border are on-going and require our involvement,” said Brown.

Maj. Gen. Hal Lamberton, adjutant general for Kentucky, also spoke during the ceremony and thanked his Soldiers for their dedication to their work and the safety of the nation.

“Our role within the entire Department of Defense, our role within the U.S. military, it’s much more significant than it was pre-9/11,” said Lamberton. “Your efforts, the security you provided along the southwest border, it had visibility that was well beyond our state and drew the attention of the entire country.”

Before the governor finished his remarks and made his way around to present the framed unit citations to the Soldiers, he praised them again for always being ready to do what is asked of them.

“This is the best National Guard in the country. You answer the call each and every time. Everywhere you show up you inspire confidence, and you bring a level of competence that lets us know that we will make it through whatever we are facing,” Beshear said.

The seven units who were represented and given the citations were: HSC 149th Maneuverer Enhancement Brigade, C. Company, 1-376 Aviation, 2112th Transportation Company, 149th Engineer Company, 130th Engineer Support Company, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 198th Military Police Battalion, 617th Military Police Company

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