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National Guard increases Japan relief operations

By Air Force Tech. Sgt. John Orrell | National Guard Bureau | March 22, 2011

ARLINGTON, Va. - The National Guard is increasing its personnel and equipment in support of Operation Tomodachi, the joint relief response after a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and resulting tsunami struck Japan, March 11, Guard officials said here today.

In addition to Guam and Kentucky National Guardmembers, who were deployed days after the quake, the Mississippi and Alabama National Guards have activated personnel to assist in the joint relief response.

The Mississippi Air National Guard’s 172nd Airlift Wing deployed a C-17 Globemaster III, March 20. The C-17 will be assisting with cargo and personnel movement and have no estimated time of completion to their new mission task.

The Alabama Army National Guard is deploying Guardmembers and resources from the 167th Theater Sustainment Command to Denver International Airport today.

Guardmembers will be assisting with the re-deployment of servicemembers stationed in Japan returning to the continental United States.

These efforts are just the latest addition to the National Guard’s support.

From Kentucky, Army Guardmembers are continuing operational support to the relief efforts in Japan.

With concerns of possible radiological contamination, the Guam National Guard had members of the 94th Civil Support Team deployed to the Guam Main Facility Post Office and Guam International Airport to screen parcels and cargo arriving from Japan.

Readings at the post office were deemed negative and safe, thus completing that National Guard mission.