An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : News : Article View
NEWS | Nov. 10, 2022

West Virginia Guard to Provide Aerial Firefighting Support

By Maj. Holli Nelson, West Virginia National Guard

FAYETTEVILLE, W.Va. – The West Virginia National Guard’s C. Co., 1-150th Assault Battalion has launched one UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter with hoist capability to Fayette County to assist local authorities in aerial firefighting. 

The crew of five Soldiers departed at approximately 9 a.m. and will fly to Fayette County to link up with emergency managers and on-scene authorities. The 1-150th Assault Battalion crew has undergone extensive training in water bucket operations over the past few years and completed their refresher training this past summer.

“No matter the need or the danger of the mission, the National Guard will always be there to help the citizens of West Virginia,” stated Maj. Gen. Bill Crane, Adjutant General of the West Virginia National Guard. “Our Wheeling-based unit has been training for many years to answer this call and will integrate with our partners in the Division of Forestry and Emergency Management Division to save lives and mitigate damage due to this fire.”

The buckets utilized in this mission can hold 550 gallons of water per scoop, equating to roughly 4,400 pounds of water. Depending on the location of a fire and the proximity to a water source, crews could potentially execute multiple passes to extinguish a fire during one mission.

This mission marks the first of its kind for the West Virginia Army National Guard’s aviation crews. The Guard has never been requested to provide aerial support for a wildland fire in the State of West Virginia’s history.

The 1-150th Assault Battalion operates the UH-60 L and M model Black Hawks. Their mission is to provide general aviation support as necessary to the Governor and the citizens of West Virginia in times of emergency. They specialize in personnel movement, sling load, rappel, fast rope insertion/extraction, helocast, paradrop and hoist operations.



Related Articles
U.S. Army Sgt. Greg Richmond, with C Company, 1st Squadron, 150th Cavalry Regiment, West Virginia Army National Guard, engages targets with the XM7 rifle and XM157 scope during night fire testing of the rifle and scope at Fort Liberty, North Carolina, as part of the Next Generation Squad Weapon system, June 13, 2024. The system includes the XM7 rifle, the XM250 automatic rifle, and the XM157 fire control system, which are designed to replace the current M4 carbine, M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, and the M240 machine gun.
West Virginia, North Carolina Guard Test NextGen Army Weapons
By Sgt. 1st Class Jon Soucy, | June 27, 2024
FORT LIBERTY, N.C. – Soldiers with the West Virginia and North Carolina Army National Guard are among those testing what may become the Army’s new standard-issue rifle and machine gun.“To be able to come here and make a...

U.S. Soldiers assigned to the 4th Battalion, 118th Infantry Regiment, 218th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, South Carolina Army National Guard, conduct an integrated training weapons strategy qualification table for the newly fielded Next Generation Squad Weapon Rifle XM7 and Next Generation Squad Weapon Automatic Rifle XM250, during a week-long training event at Fort Stewart, Georgia, June 20, 2024. The South Carolina Army National Guard is the third Army National Guard command to receive the new weapons, following the North Carolina National Guard and the West Virginia National Guard.
South Carolina Guard Modernizes with NextGen Squad Weapons
By Maj. Karla Evans, | June 24, 2024
FORT STEWART, Ga. – Soldiers assigned to 4th Battalion, 118th Infantry Regiment, 218th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, South Carolina Army National Guard, conducted an integrated training weapons strategy qualification table...

A wildland fire 1st Sgt. John Russell of the West Virginia National Guard's 249th Band was confronted with near his home in Winchester, Virginia, Nov. 19, 2020. Russell used basic wildland firefighting training he received with the West Virginia Division of Forestry (WVDOF) in October 2019 to help contain the fire and save a neighbor's home from potential damage.
W.Va. Guardsman uses unique training to save neighbor's home
By Edwin Wriston | Nov. 24, 2020
WINCHESTER, Va. – Sitting in their home on a blustery evening Nov. 19, West Virginia National Guard (WVNG) 1st Sgt. John Russell and his wife were enjoying a relaxing night of television."As we were enjoying our show,...