THE CALL OF DUTY
During the aftermath of the April winter storm last week, members of the Minnesota Army National Guard were deployed across the state to help in various ways.
Two of those guardsman were neighbors in Kasson, Sgt. Brian Rinehart and Ssg. Brian Wunderlich.
For Wunderlich, he is in his 15 years with the Minnesota Army National and has been overseas three times, but this was the first time he has helped with a Minnesota State of Emergency.
Rinehart has been a guardsman for more than 18 years, and with this storm he has now been called to help with two national disasters. Previously, Rinehart helped with guarding homes that were destroyed during a tornado.
During the recent storm, and any national emergency that they are called to help with, Rinehart explained that what they are expected to help with can change any moment.
“What's expected of us could change at a moment's notice. We remain flexible and ready for anything to fit the needs of the community. Could be helping residents leave a dangerous area to providing an extra hand for local law enforcement,” Rinehart explained.
Wunderlich explained that being called to help during the state of emergency is something that means a lot to him.
“It means alot to be utilized as an asset for the state of Minnesota. That's what the National Guard was designed for. Utilizing us to guard the down power lines and assisting the local police frees them up there assets to do more for the community,” Wunderlich said.
Although the MNANG is one entity that helped out with the aftermath during the most recent national disaster, Wunderlich also recognized the fact that many others helped with restoring power.
“I want to thank the men and women who are working with the electric company. I have seen Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin crews working day in and day out all focused on the same mission,” Wunderlich said.