Texas State Guard Participates in 2012 Oral Rabies Vaccination Program

Texas State Guard Participates in 2012 Oral Rabies Vaccination Program
Laura Lopez, Texas Military Forces Public Affairs
2012/02/08

Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, Director Joint Staff and Commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas, receives a briefing from 2nd Lt. Steve Walker of the Texas State Guard 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment at the Oral Rabies Vaccination Program command post in Zapata, Texas on January 6, 2012. A cooperative effort between the Texas Department of State Health Services, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Texas National Guard and other local, state and federal agencies in an effort to eradicate and prevent reintroduction of the rabies virus, goals for 2012 include dropping more than 450,000 baits in South Texas during the 16 day mission. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).
Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, Director Joint Staff and Commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas, receives a briefing from 2nd Lt. Steve Walker of the Texas State Guard 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment at the Oral Rabies Vaccination Program command post in Zapata, Texas on January 6, 2012. A cooperative effort between the Texas Department of State Health Services, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Texas National Guard and other local, state and federal agencies in an effort to eradicate and prevent reintroduction of the rabies virus, goals for 2012 include dropping more than 450,000 baits in South Texas during the 16 day mission. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).

ZAPATA, Texas – Members of the Texas State Guard joined forces with the Texas Department of State Health Services, the United States Department of Agriculture, as well as other local, state and federal agencies from January 3, 2012 to January 18, 2012 to participate in the 2012 Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program.

With 1.8 million doses of the oral rabies vaccine expected to be dropped over portions of South and West Texas, Texas State Guard Soldiers with the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment provided both ground and air crew support that included navigational assistance, the operating and management of the bait drop and the loading of the baits onto the aircraft. A program the Texas State Guard has actively taken part in since 2007, this is one of the many humanitarian missions they are proud to be a part of.

“The 2012 ORVP mission will be an experience I will not soon forget,” said Incident Commander Second Lieutenant

Paul Petit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment, unloads a bag of bait to be dropped over the South Texas Zapata area during the 2012 Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. Since the program’s inception in 1995, more than 39 million doses of the oral rabies vaccine, Raboral V RG, have been distributed over approximately 540,000 square miles of Texas. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez)
Paul Petit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment, unloads a bag of bait to be dropped over the South Texas Zapata area during the 2012 Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. Since the program’s inception in 1995, more than 39 million doses of the oral rabies vaccine, Raboral V RG, have been distributed over approximately 540,000 square miles of Texas. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez)

Stephen Walker, 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment. “I was honored to work alongside fellow members of the TXSG, members of federal and state agencies and to serve the citizens of Texas. Such a mission truly gives the TXSG members a feeling of giving back to his or her community for such a worthwhile cause.”

On January 6, 2012, Texas State Guard member, Corporal Paul Petit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment takes part in one of the many flights that assists in the aerial distribution of Raboral V RG, during a 16 day Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. With statistics showing a drastic reduction in rabies cases the goal of this program is to create zones of vaccinated coyotes and gray foxes along the leading edges of the epizootics stopping the spread of the virus. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).
Originally initiated in 1995, with the goal of creating zones of vaccinated coyotes and gray foxes along the leading edges of the epizootics, statistics from the Texas Department of State Health Services show animal cases of the canine strain of rabies in southern Texas fell from 122 in 1994 to zero in 2000 with single cases in 2001 and 2004. In addition the fox strain, prevalent in western Texas, dropped from 244 animal cases in 1995 to zero in 2010 and 2011.

A mission Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, Director Joint Staff and Commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas describes as important to the state of Texas, its citizens and to the Texas economy he and other representatives from the Texas Military Forces and Department of State Health Services visited the command post in Zapata, Texas on January 6, 2012 for a first-hand look.

This is another example of how we can effectively work together with our partnering agencies and benefit our citizens at a time when no disaster is present,” said Smith.

While the vaccine dose dropped is enclosed in a small packet dipped in fish oil and coated with fish meal crumbles, health services representatives say the baits do not pose any risk to humans and will not become established in the environment making the Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program an exceptionally safe method of controlling rabies.

Texas State Guard member, Corporal Paul Petit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment, holds a dose of the oral rabies vaccine, Raboral V RG, about to be dropped over the South Texas Zapata area during the 2012 Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. A cooperative effort between the Texas Department of State Health Services, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Texas National Guard and other local, state and federal agencies in an effort to eradicate and prevent reintroduction of the rabies virus, goals for 2012 include dropping more than 450,000 baits in South Texas during the 16 day mission. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez)
Texas State Guard member, Corporal Paul Petit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment, holds a dose of the oral rabies vaccine, Raboral V RG, about to be dropped over the South Texas Zapata area during the 2012 Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. A cooperative effort between the Texas Department of State Health Services, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Texas National Guard and other local, state and federal agencies in an effort to eradicate and prevent reintroduction of the rabies virus, goals for 2012 include dropping more than 450,000 baits in South Texas during the 16 day mission. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez)
On January 6, 2012, Texas State Guard member, Corporal Paul Petit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment takes part in one of the many flights that assists in the aerial distribution of Raboral V RG, during a 16 day Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. With statistics showing a drastic reduction in rabies cases the goal of this program is to create zones of vaccinated coyotes and gray foxes along the leading edges of the epizootics stopping the spread of the virus. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).
On January 6, 2012, Texas State Guard member, Corporal Paul Petit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment takes part in one of the many flights that assists in the aerial distribution of Raboral V RG, during a 16 day Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. With statistics showing a drastic reduction in rabies cases the goal of this program is to create zones of vaccinated coyotes and gray foxes along the leading edges of the epizootics stopping the spread of the virus. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).

 

On January 6, 2012, Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, Director Joint Staff and Commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas (second from left) met with members of the Texas State Guard and received an overview of the annual Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program in Zapata, Texas. Since the program’s inception in 1995, more than 39 million doses of the oral rabies vaccine, Raboral V RG, have been distributed over approximately 540,000 square miles of Texas. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).
On January 6, 2012, Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, Director Joint Staff and Commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas (second from left) met with members of the Texas State Guard and received an overview of the annual Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program in Zapata, Texas. Since the program’s inception in 1995, more than 39 million doses of the oral rabies vaccine, Raboral V RG, have been distributed over approximately 540,000 square miles of Texas. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).
On January 6, 2012, Texas State Guard member, Corporal Paul Pettit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment takes part in one of the many flights that assists in the aerial distribution of Raboral V RG, during a 16 day Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. With statistics showing a drastic reduction in rabies cases the goal of this program is to create zones of vaccinated coyotes and gray foxes along the leading edges of the epizootics stopping the spread of the virus. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).
On January 6, 2012, Texas State Guard member, Corporal Paul Pettit of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment takes part in one of the many flights that assists in the aerial distribution of Raboral V RG, during a 16 day Oral Rabies Vaccination Program. With statistics showing a drastic reduction in rabies cases the goal of this program is to create zones of vaccinated coyotes and gray foxes along the leading edges of the epizootics stopping the spread of the virus. (U.S. Army photo by Laura L. Lopez).

Texas State Guard Participates in 2012 Oral Rabies Vaccination Program 2-2

Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, director Joint Staff and commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas (second from left) met with members of the Texas State Guard and received an overview of the annual Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program in Zapata, Texas.
On Jan. 6, 2012, Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, director Joint Staff and commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas (second from left) met with members of the Texas State Guard and received an overview of the annual Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program in Zapata, Texas. Since the program's inception in 1995, more than 39 million doses of the oral rabies vaccine, Raboral V RG, have been distributed over approximately 540,000 square miles of Texas.

 

 Story by Laura Lopez
 
 ZAPATA, Texas – Members of the Texas State Guard joined forces with the Texas Department of State Health Services,  the United States Department of Agriculture, as well as other local, state and federal agencies, Jan. 3-18, to participate in  the 2012 Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program.
 
 With 1.8 million doses of the oral rabies vaccine expected to be dropped over portions of South and West Texas, Texas  State Guard soldiers with the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment provided both ground and air crew support that included navigational assistance, the operating and management of the bait drop and the loading of the baits onto the aircraft. A  program the Texas State Guard has actively taken part in since 2007, this is one of the many humanitarian missions they  are proud to be a part of.
 
 “The 2012 ORVP mission will be an experience I will not soon forget,” said Incident Commander 2nd Lt. Stephen Walker,  3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment. “I was honored to work alongside fellow members of the TXSG, members of federal and state  agencies and to serve the citizens of Texas. Such a mission truly gives the TXSG members a feeling of giving back to his  or her community for such a worthwhile cause.”
 
 Originally initiated in 1995, with the goal of creating zones of vaccinated coyotes and gray foxes along the leading edges  of the epizootics, statistics from the Texas Department of State Health Services show animal cases of the canine strain  of rabies in southern Texas fell from 122 in 1994 to zero in 2000 with single cases in 2001 and 2004. In addition the fox  strain, prevalent in western Texas, dropped from 244 animal cases in 1995 to zero in 2010 and 2011.
 A mission Brig. Gen. William L. Smith, Director Joint Staff and Commander, Domestic Operations for Joint Force Headquarters of Texas describes as important to the state of Texas, its citizens and to the Texas economy he and other representatives from the Texas Military Forces and Department of State Health Services visited the command post in Zapata, Texas, Jan. 6, for a first-hand look.
 
“This is another example of how we can effectively work together with our partnering agencies and benefit our citizens at a time when no disaster is present,” said Smith.
While the vaccine dose dropped is enclosed in a small packet dipped in fish oil and coated with fish meal crumbles, health services representatives say the baits do not pose any risk to humans and will not become established in the environment making the Texas Oral Rabies Vaccination Program an exceptionally safe method of controlling rabies.

Texas State Guard Announces Junior and Senior Enlisted Members of the Year

Texas State Guard Announces Junior and Senior Enlisted Members of the Year
COL Robert Hastings, PAO, TXSG
2011/12/12
AUSTIN, TX -- The Texas State Guard has announced its outstanding enlisted members of the year.

Cpl. Peggy Gutierrez, a civil affairs specialist with the 4th Civil Affairs Regiment in Denton and Staff Sgt. Robert Lewis, an NCO with the Texas Maritime Regiment in Dallas have been selected as the Texas State Guard (TXSG) Junior Enlisted and Senior Enlisted Members of the Year.

Gutierrez and Lewis were recognized by TXSG Commanding General Maj. Gen. Ray Peters during ceremonies at the annual holiday dinner Dec. 10th. “These two individuals represent what is best about the Texas State Guard and Texas Military Forces,” said Maj. Gen. Peters. “They are dedicated professionals who give their all for their fellow Texans. I’m proud to serve with them.”

Cpl. Gutierrez has been a member of the TXSG for about one year. During that time she was recognized as the Honor Graduate of her Basic Orientation Course, earned the Military Emergency Management Specialist qualification, and was selected for Officer Candidate School.

“Cpl. Gutierrez's participation and commitment to the Texas State Guard is unparalleled,” said Col. Howard Palmer, commander of the 4th Civil Affairs Regiment. “Cpl. Gutierrez has distinguished herself as both an exemplary soldier and a selfless community servant and leader. She has brought an unequaled drive to excel to the 4th Regiment. Cpl. Gutierrez hit the ground running, and hasn't slowed down yet.”

Staff Sgt. Lewis has served in a number of key leadership roles including Operations Officer, Logistics NCO, training instructor and member of the TXSG Joint Color Guard.

“Staff Sgt. Lewis has been and continues to be an inspiration to the entire Maritime Regiment,” said Brig. Gen. Robert Bodisch, commander of the Texas Maritime Regiment (TMAR). “His determined and gifted leadership, dedication and military bearing combined with his talent as an instructor place him above all others. Staff Sgt. Lewis is a role model to us all.”

The Texas State Guard is one of four branches of the Texas Military Forces (TXMF), operating under the command of the Adjutant General of Texas and the Governor as Commander-in-Chief of all state military forces. The TXMF includes the Texas Army National Guard, the Texas Air National Guard and th4 Adjutant General’s Department.

The mission of the Texas State Guard (TXSG) is to provide mission-ready military forces to assist state and local authorities in times of state emergencies; to conduct homeland security and community service activities under the umbrella of Defense Support to Civil Authorities; and to augment the Texas Army National Guard and Texas Air National Guard as required.

Headquartered at Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas, the TXSG functions as an organized state militia under the authority of Title 32 of the U.S. Code and Chapter 431 of the Texas Government Code.