PA guard deploys 10 soldiers to assist with Harvey relief efforts

Governor Mark Dayton has approved sending 11 soldiers from Minnesota National Guard's 34th Combat Aviation Brigade to support the response efforts.

"I am glad that Minnesota will be able to assist the victims of the awful tragedy in Texas, with 11 Minnesota National Guard soldiers accompanying two Chinook helicopters to join in relief efforts", said Governor Dayton.

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The soldiers departed in two CH-47 Chinook helicopters from Muir Army Airfield at Fort Indiantown Gap yesterday and flew to Grand Prairie airport near Dallas.

"That'll free up first responders and local law enforcement to focus on other areas", he said Friday. It's possible Texas Gov. Greg Abbott could request additional assistance in the coming weeks.

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The Chinooks have a hoist that can be used for rescue missions if necessary, but "our job is cargo", Nebraska Army National Guard Chief Warrant Officer Dallas Bundy said.

Col. Hapgood says it's not the first time Iowa soldiers have been called on following a major storm. The National Guard took over a private airport in Brookshire, where they are preparing 8,000 pounds of supplies.

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The group left from the Armed Forces Reserve Center in Norman.


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