(April 18, 2017) The National Guard responded to 60 natural disasters, wildfires and severe weather events in fiscal 2016. It continues to have 4,000 members conducting domestic operations on federal-duty status each day.
The 57 National Guard Civil Support Teams were called nearly 3,500 times, and Guard aviators logged more than 17,000 flight hours in the battle to stop illegal drug trafficking.
These are figures pulled from the National Guard Bureau Posture Statement for 2018 now available on the bureau website. The annual report includes a look at the Guard’s war effort, homeland missions and family support.
It notes that the Army Guard Military Funeral Honors team attended 122,762 funerals for service members and veterans in fiscal 2016.
The 26-page document includes an executive overview from Gen. Joseph L. Lengyel, the bureau chief, who took on those duties last summer. He describes a busy force that is going to remain busy.
“During my visits with our men and women, I was told time and again they wanted to do more and they were not tired,” he writes. “I know we can judiciously increase our deployment numbers to relieve stress on the active duty force and help them grow readiness to address emerging threats.”
He pledges to do more to prevent suicides in the ranks and put greater emphasis on the mental health of soldiers and airmen.
“We will do our best to provide our Guard members and their families more predictability in order to better plan and prepare for deployments and training obligations,” Lengyel writes. “We owe these measures to our service members and their families for their dedicated service and the sacrifices they undertake for our nation.”