The National Guard is the only branch of the military that supports both the president of the United States and the governor of the Guard’s home state. This unique aspect is called our dual mission, and as a result, the Missouri National Guard answers to both President Joe Biden and Governor Michael L. Parson. Both the Missouri Army and Air National Guard are currently exceeding their recruiting goals, with nearly 12,000 Guardsmen serving, hailing form all 114 Missouri counties.
Our STATE MISSION is to provide trained and disciplined forces for domestic emergencies or as otherwise required by state law under the authority of the governor. Before the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, most people typically pictured Missouri National Guard members filling sandbags or helping transport affected citizens during the floods of 1993. Our role has expanded since 9/11, with Guard members continually serving around the world and around our country helping during floods, tornadoes, civil disturbances, winter storms, hurricane responses, and most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic; that stateside mission is still a major part of what we do.
Our FEDERAL MISSION is to maintain properly trained and equipped units for prompt mobilization for war, national emergency, or as otherwise directed by the president. Missouri National Guard members must always be ready for any mission from the president, including peacekeeping missions and overseas contingency operations.
Based at Rosecrans Memorial Airport, the 139th Airlift Wing flies C-130H model aircraft. The Advanced Airlift Tactics Training Center at Rosecrans trains crews from all components and allies from around the world. The 139th Airlift Wing, in St. Joseph, provides the state and nation with immediately deployable, combat-ready C-130H-model aircraft. The wing’s pilots and crews have flown missions in operations including Just Cause, Volant Oak, Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
The 157th Air Operations Group, at Jefferson Barracks, provides trained, experienced cadre to execute joint forces air component commander’s contingency plans. The 157th Air Operation Group responds to operational requirements within the Headquarters, Pacific Air Force area of responsibility. That area, which covers from the east coast of Africa to the west coast of the North/South American land mass, is by far the largest geographic area under any single combatant command. The Group is a senior command and control element in the new joint war-fighting headquarters doctrine and continues to refine a ‘reach back’ capability for any joint forces air component commander in the world.
The 35th Combat Aviation Brigade units fly UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters, LUH-72 Kiowa observation helicopters, UH-60 Blackhawks utility headquarters, and C-12 Huron transport planes. The 35th Combat Aviation Brigade deploys to an area of responsibility to provide command, control, staff planning and supervision of combat aviation brigade operations. The brigade’s units are capable of performing unit, intermediate and depot-level aviation maintenance. Missouri is one of only five locations in the U.S. with the capability to perform depot-level aviation maintenance.
The 35th Engineer Brigade undertakes plans, integrates and directs the execution of engineer missions. Headquartered at Fort Leonard Wood, the 35th Engineer Brigade includes the 1140th Engineer Battalion and 203rd Engineer Battalion. Engineers have a wide range of activities, from innovative readiness training exercises right in their hometowns to helping build schools in Iraq. Engineers are an important asset in both overseas contingency operations and for local state emergency duties. The brigade’s Soldiers have deployed to support overseas contingency operations.
Known as the King of Battle, Missouri’s field artillery units have a long, proud history. Its Soldiers have deployed to support overseas contingency operations and stateside flooding. Our Field Artillery units have transformed since the terrorist attacks on our nation. Probably the most famous Field Artillery unit in the Missouri Guard is Battery D located in Independence. This unit is known as “Truman’s Own” unit because it was the unit President Harry S Truman commanded during World War I.”
The 131st Bomb Wing, at Whiteman Air Force Base, provides full spectrum, expeditionary B-2 Spirit global strike and combat support capabilities. The 131st Bomb Wing began a classic unit association with the active-duty 509th Bomb Wing at Whiteman Air Force Base. The unit’s Airmen now work alongside their active-duty counterparts and are the only Guardsmen flying the B-2.
Missouri medics provide a wide range of medical services, whether they are helping after a stateside emergency or supporting efforts overseas. The 229th Medical Battalion provides a scalable, flexible and modular Medical Battle Command, administrative assistance, logistical support, and technical supervision capability for assigned and attached medical organizations (companies and detachments) task-organized for support of deployed forces. Both of its companies have deployed to support Operation Iraqi Freedom. The 139th Medical Group provides a wide range of medical services, and recently served as the medical support for the Homeland Response Force.
Military Police are prepared to assist civil authorities during stateside emergencies and conduct a wide range law and order-related overseas missions. The Missouri National Guard has two Military Police Battalions – the 205th and 175th – under the command and control of 70th Troop Command. Since Sept. 11, 2001, every Missouri Military Police Company has been mobilized overseas to Iraq, Afghanistan or Kosovo.
The Missouri National Guard could not function without critical support units including maintenance, supply, signal and transportation. They are indispensible in both the fight overseas and during state emergencies. Our support units have been increasingly busy with skills essential to sustaining the large number of mobilized Soldiers around the world. Support units provide essential services such as: maintenance, supply and transportation functions to support war-fighters.
The 7th Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Team supports civil authorities in responding to suspected weapons of mass destruction attacks by rapidly deploying to and assessing an affected area. The Missouri National Guard’s 7th Civil Support Team meets with hundreds of first responders from Missouri every year, training personnel and coordinating response. The team is designed to provide Nuclear, Biological, Chemical and Radiological detection, assessment, advice to the Incident Commander, and facilitate military support to local first responders, in situations involving Weapons of Mass Destruction.
The joint Homeland Response Force is a nearly-600-member team augmenting existing Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and high-yield Explosive Response Force Package (CERFP) with a brigade-level headquarters and security forces. The team offers another layer of assistance to civil authorities in chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear incidents. The team works with state agencies, emergency management directors and first responders, and can plan, rehearse and synchronize CBRN response activities, roles and responsibilities prior to an incident.
The Counterdrug Task Force provides specialized equipment, facilities and personnel to aid law enforcement and supplies informed personnel to educate school and community organizations. The Counterdrug Task Force leverages its unique assets in three fronts: Providing analytical support to law enforcement to reduce the supply of illicit drugs, providing prevention professionals to communities to aid in reducing the demand for illicit drugs, and providing aviation support to law enforcement to find illicit drugs in the state. In FY2017, the team directly contributed to the arrest of 1,073 suspects and the seizure of drugs, weapons, vehicles, property and cash valued at $91,375,391. This includes 8,078,182 in currency, $75,018,927 in drugs and $125,082 in weapons.
The 27th Recruiting and Retention Battalion’s Recruit Sustainment Program prepares new Soldiers for the rigors of basic and advanced individual training. With companies strategically placed throughout Missouri, the Recruit Sustainment Program prepares newly-enlisted Soldiers for what they will face at basic and advanced individual training. Cadre from the battalion teach basic Soldier skills at the program’s monthly drills. The program has increased retention and ensured Missouri’s Soldiers are among the most prepared in the nation.
Missouri’s state partnership with Panama improves long-term international security while building a partnership across all levels of society that is mutually beneficial. Missouri’s state partnership with Panama improves long-term international security while building a partnership across all levels of society that is mutually beneficial. The program includes medical, judicial, aero-space, counter drug, and vehicle maintenance experts.
A partnership between the Missouri National Guard and the Missouri Division of Workforce Development, Show-Me Heroes is an initiative to provide increased employment interview and hiring opportunities to Missouri’s Veterans and members of her National Guard and Reserve forces, and to showcase those employers who have pledged to do so. Show-Me Heroes can connect you with these supporting employers, statewide or by Workforce region, when you visit our web portal at ShowMeHeroes.mo.gov.
The Missouri Committee for Employers Support of the Guard and Reserve promotes a culture in which employers support and value their employees’ military service. The program recognizes outstanding support, increases awareness of the law, and mediates conflicts. The program runs a variety of events including visits to mobilization training and boss lifts.
The Family Program Office has a twofold mission – to improve the quality of life for Guard members and their Families, and to enhance service member readiness and retention. The office’s Youth Program supports children of Guard members with summer camps and other events and the Missouri Military Relief Fund provides thousands of dollars in financial assistance to Guard and Reserve component Families that need assistance.
Established in 1999, the Military Funeral Honors Program coordinates and provides military funeral honors to Missouri’s military Veterans. Our Military Funeral Honors program was the first in the nation to provide funeral honors to every honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. military. Before the program was established, only veterans who had served in wartime or had retired from the military were eligible for the honors. This program would not be possible without the support of various Veterans Service Organizations around the state.
Through the Veterans Recognition Program, Missouri has recognized thousands of Veterans who served during World War II, Korea and Vietnam. To date, the Veterans Recognition Program has honored 46,965 World War II Veterans, 18,441 Korean War Veterans and 30,949 Vietnam-era Veterans. The program also recently announced the creation of an Iraq service medal, recognizing service members who served during the Gulf War, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn.
The Defense Department’s Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program synchronizes, plans and manages the deployment cycle support process for unit and individual mobilizations in support of the adjutant general’s intent. The Defense Department’s Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program synchronizes, plans and manages the deployment cycle support process for unit and individual mobilizations in support of the adjutant general’s intent. The program helps Veterans identify organizations and benefits that will aid them in their return to civilian life.
The Missouri National Guard is a national leader in social networking. Visit us on Facebook, Flickr, Twitter, and Instagram . Become a fan, and learn the latest and greatest Missouri National Guard news as it happens.