Posts in Category: Texas State Guard

"THIS IS AN EXERCISE... THIS IS AN EXERCISE" - Disaster Assessment Exercise

“THIS IS AN EXERCISE ... THIS IS AN EXERCISE” - Disaster Assessment Exercise
MAJ J. Michael Spraggins, TXSG Public Affairs
2009/03/31
 

Chaplin Fair, Brownwood City Councileman Steven Ray Brownwood Regional Medical Center and CPT Spratt Assistant Exercise Director.Photo by MAJ J. Michael Spraggins, TXSG Public Affairs
Chaplin Fair, Brownwood City Councileman Steven Ray Brownwood Regional Medical Center and CPT Spratt Assistant Exercise Director.Photo by MAJ J. Michael Spraggins, TXSG Public Affairs

This is an exercise .... this is an exercise, are the first words that will be heard and the last, for any Mock Disaster communications radio / telephone traffic during three days in May in Brown and Comanche County, which includes the City of Brownwood, and City of Early.

A Planning session was held on 19 March, for the Disaster Assessment Exercise sponsored by the Texas State Guard (TXSG) and the Brownwood / Brown County Local Government and Columbia Regional Geospatial Service Center.

CPT Robert Spratt, HQ J3 TXSG, who lives in the Brownwood area, is OIC of the exercise. Chaplin (CPT) Dave Fair, HQ TXSG, also of Brownwood, and City Councilman, working with CPT Spratt, they were instrumental in insuring wide spread participation of local and regional governmental and non government organizations (NGO). In addition National Guard Civil Support Team Six -HAZMAT will participate in the disaster drill.

CPT Spratt is credited with completing and producing the comprehensive Disaster Assessment Exercise Plan, incorporating requirements set forth by Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP).

The TXSG will be supporting this exercise with five GPS trained Damage Assessment Teams, Communications, Command Center staff and three TXSG Texas Medical Brigade medical aid teams supporting the teams in the field.

CPT Spratt, OIC and Charles Ashton of the Columbia Regional Geospatial Center REGIONAL, brief disaster drill players.Photo by MAJ J. Michael Spraggins, TXSG Public Affairs
CPT Spratt, OIC and Charles Ashton of the Columbia Regional Geospatial Center REGIONAL, brief disaster drill players.Photo by MAJ J. Michael Spraggins, TXSG Public Affairs

The purpose of this exercise is to measure and validate performance of participants’ capabilities and their associated critical tasks.

  • Emergency Operations Center Management
  • Communications
  • Emergency Public Information and Warning
  • Triage and Pre-Hospital Treatment
  • Medical Surge
  • Mass Care (Sheltering, Feeding, and Related Services)
  • Wide Area Damage Assessment (GPS)

The TXSG will be assessing its capability and adequacy of plans for responding to and conducting Wide Area Damage Assessments. This includes land navigation, establishing waypoints and a GPS network.

Some of the participants at the planning session were:

  • TXSG COL Kissel, COL C. Miller, COL R. Miller, COL Watkins, MAJ Spraggins, CPT Hollands, CW4 Sanchez
  • TXANG MAJ Creek, CPT. Robert Nash, Camp Bowie
  • Columbia Regional Geospatial Service Center (CRGSC)
  • West Central Texas Council of Government (WCTCOG)
  • Brown County Officials, City of Brownwood Officials, Comanche County Officials
  • Brownwood Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Brownwood Regional Medical Center / Guardian EMS
  • Howard Payne University

Robert D. Gaylor NCO Academy recognized by Texas Military Forces

Robert D. Gaylor NCO Academy recognized by Texas Military Forces
Chief Master Sgt. Norm King, TXMF Public Affairs
2009/02/27

Brig. Gen. Bob Cheeseman (right), Texas State Guard Air Division commander, presents the Texas Meritorious Unit Award to Chief Master Sgt. Albert McGowan, Robert D. Gaylor NCO Academy Commandant. The academy was recognized for offering a comprehensive and professional program tailored to the needs of the Texas State Guard NCO Corps.Photo by Robbin Cresswell
Brig. Gen. Bob Cheeseman (right), Texas State Guard Air Division commander, presents the Texas Meritorious Unit Award to Chief Master Sgt. Albert McGowan, Robert D. Gaylor NCO Academy Commandant. The academy was recognized for offering a comprehensive and professional program tailored to the needs of the Texas State Guard NCO Corps.Photo by Robbin Cresswell

Brig. Gen. Bob Cheeseman, the Texas State Guard Air Division Commander, recently presented the Texas Meritorious Unit Award to Chief Master Sgt. Albert McGowan, Robert D. Gaylor NCO Academy Commandant, and his instructors.

Academy instructors and staff have supported the Airmen and Soldiers of the Texas State Guard by voluntarily offering both an NCO and Senior NCO Professional Development Course of Instruction since 2002. The courses, presented each summer, are a comprehensive and professional program tailored to the needs of the Texas State Guard NCO Corps.

The courses include an advanced reading list requirement and four full days of instruction over two intense weekends. More than 200 Texas State Guard NCOs have been trained in the last seven years.

This professional training has paid great dividends in advancing the NCO Corps of the Texas State Guard helping them to more easily interface with their counterparts in the Texas Army and Air National Guard. The training provided to the Texas State Guard has been a voluntary, community service effort by the academy’s faculty on their off-duty time and at no cost to the Texas State Guard or the Air Force.

Soldiers to Use GPS Next Hurricane Season

Soldiers to Use GPS Next Hurricane Season
Ashlea Sigman
2009/02/07

Texas State Guard, 2nd Battalion, 8th Regiment soldiers train with GPS devices to be used during hurricane season.Photo by KBTX - News - Bryan / College Station Texas
Texas State Guard, 2nd Battalion, 8th Regiment soldiers train with GPS devices to be used during hurricane season.Photo by KBTX - News - Bryan / College Station Texas

GPS devices are becoming more and more common. Now, the Texas Military will be using them after a disaster.

The 2nd Battalion, 8th regiment of the Texas State Guard, based in Bryan, trained at Lick Creek Park in College Station Saturday.

Working with a program developed by the Columbia Geospatial Center, the soldiers learned how to better respond after natural disasters, using GPS.

“Like downed power line or injured personnel or hazardous waste and when we’re done making all of our points, we can upload it to a computer and then print it on a map so emergency responders can see exact spots where the problem areas are,” said Lt. Joseph Ferguson.

The technology was used by a small group after Hurricane Ike, and will be more widely used this coming hurricane season.

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Texas State Guard Graduates New Recruits

Texas State Guard Graduates New Recruits
KTBC - Fox 7 News - Austin
2009/01/31

AUSTIN (my FOX Austin) -- The Texas State Guardsman welcomed 12 new recruits on Saturday during a graduation ceremony. They also accepted a donation of GPS units from Wal-Mart that will help the guardsmen during disaster response.

Fair Tapped for Homeland Security

Fair Tapped for Homeland Security
Police USA
2009/01/30
American Board for Certification in Homeland SecurityDr. David Fair, President of the American Association of Police Officers has been chosen to write a course for the American Board for Certification in Homeland Security. The training is entitled Terrorism Trauma Syndrome, and will cover the education, prevention, and intervention of psychological trauma as the result of or threat of terrorist events.

The concept is to create and keep a healthier homeland security force on the national, state and local basis.

Members of the ABCHS are from the military, law enforcement, private sector, security and other entities involved in protecting the homeland.

Once completed Dr. Fair’s course will be available to members and will create a certification in Terrorism Trauma to better equip members.

Fair is Certified in Homeland Security at Level III and serves on the groups curriculum committee. He is a licensed Texas Peace Officer, and a Chaplain for the Texas Military Forces, TXSG-HQ.

Veterans receive special honor

Veterans receive special honor
Elissa Rivas, KTRK ABC13, Houston
2008/12/13

SSgt Kimmerly Peyton of the 447th Air Support Group, 5th Air Wing, Texas State Guard explains his involvement in the event
SSgt Kimmerly Peyton of the 447th Air Support Group, 5th Air Wing, Texas State Guard explains his involvement in the event

At the Houston National Cemetery our veterans’ sacrifices are honored in a special way this holiday season, with the laying of wreaths, thousands of them.

“These families, you know, their loved ones have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country,” said Airman First Class Justin Watts of the Texas State Guard. “It is a way for us to step up and say to that family member we thank you for what has happened.”

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Bandera County to honor veterans Saturday

Bandera County to honor veterans Saturday
Zeke MacCormack - Express-News
2008/11/06

Governor Rick Perry discusses TXSG operations with BG Victor M. Ortiz Jr. during recent hurricane activation.Photo by MAJ Michael Spraggins
Governor Rick Perry discusses TXSG operations with BG Victor M. Ortiz Jr. during recent hurricane activation.Photo by MAJ Michael Spraggins

A parade, banquet and exhibits featuring service memorabilia of Bandera County veterans and their families will take place this Saturday at the fourth annual Bandera Honors Veterans event. The commemoration at the county courthouse begins at 9 a.m. with a flag-raising, followed by an address by Brig. Gen. Victor M. Ortiz Jr., deputy commander of the Texas State Guard.

A parade down Main Street begins at 11 a.m. Vendors will sell food and other items around the courthouse, but veterans are invited to a free lunch at the American Legion Post No. 157 at 205 12th St. starting at 12:30 p.m.

“We want to invite everybody to participate in honoring our veterans, and also our active military,” said Fidel Ramirez, event organizer.

TXSG Texas Maritime Regiment (TMR) 1st Battalion to the rescue

TXSG Texas Maritime Regiment (TMR) 1st Battalion to the rescue
KTRK News, Houston
2008/09/25
The video was taken by ABC 13 News in Houston, Texas. Saturday 13 SEP 08 after Hurricane Ike passed though Houston.

The two sailors rescuing the stranded motorist are members of the TXSG Texas Maritime Regiment (TMR) 1st Battalion. Other sailors of the 1st Battalion were stopping traffic from entering the Texas Military Forces - Task Force Ike convoy seen in the background.

'Until the job is done'

’Until the job is done’
Maurel Merette
2008/09/14
On the eve of Hurricane Ike making landfall in south Texas, Bill Shafer is already in the thick of it.

The captain of the Wichita Falls chapter of the Salvation Army is in San Antonio, awaiting the worst of the storm, which was expected to make landfall early this morning.

Shafer is scheduled to travel with a Salvation Army group to Galveston, where forecasters expect Hurricane Ike to cause the most damage.

“Once the people start coming back, they’ll need food, household supplies and cleaning kits. They’ll have to get their houses ready,” said Shafer who is one of several local residents who have been deployed to assist with Hurricane Ike’s aftermath.

While waiting to go into what promises to be a disaster area, Shafer admired the countless buses of evacuees arriving at his location — arriving with concerns over the homes they left and the reports of waves of water going over the 16-foot seawall in Galveston.

“They just don’t know what’s going to happen,” said Shafer.

Trent Anderson, district supervisor of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, said some game wardens have moved into the area.

“We do have a few that are already down, but we are keeping some people,” said Anderson, who wanted to make sure that there would be enough bodies should there be a need for a local response.

“We don’t want to deploy everybody out of here and not be able to respond,” he said.

Texas game wardens have been active throughout the state since last week with Hurricane Gustav, flooding in Lubbock and now Hurricane Ike.

According to a news release from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, more than 200 game wardens deployed for Hurricane Ike in southeast Texas.

For Anderson, preparations have been a waiting game as no one is yet fully certain of where the hurricane will make landfall. Six wardens from our district and all of the others are on standby waiting to see where they are needed, he said.

“We have to wait and see because hurricanes are very unpredictable,” Anderson said.

Businessman Tom Hebert is no meteorologist, but he does know hurricane evacuations.

Herbert, a member of the Texas State Guard, spent a week in Marshall during Hurricane Gustav’s aftermath before returning Friday in preparation for the arrival of Ike to the Texas mainland.

“We assist the emergency management coordinator in running the shelters, assist the Red Cross to make sure that the shelters run smoothly and provide some resemblance of a military presence for the people,” Herbert said.

“It’s one of the things we do; we make a commitment,” said Hebert, who is part of a Texas State Guard unit whose members are spread out in different shelters in the area.

“We’re pretty spread out,” he said. “We’re going to have eight Wichita Falls residents in Marshall, a ranger unit in Tyler that has about four or five who are from Wichita Falls.”

They expect to be out on deployment for about a week, but are prepared to be there longer if necessary, Herbert said.

“Our orders depend on the deployment. Our orders are now for a week, but if the people in our shelter lose everything, they’ll stay for more than a week,” he said. “We’ll stay until the job is done.”