Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon and Maj. Gen. Stephen L. Danner, adjutant general of the Missouri National Guard, were in northwest Missouri June 10 to see first-hand the flooding concerns along the Missouri River.
After spending time with the 139th Airlift Wing at Rosecrans Airport in St. Joseph, Nixon and Danner got a bird TMs eye view of the river and levees via a Blackhawk helicopter. They then headed north to Oregon, Mo. for a roundtable discussion with Nixon TMs staff and community members at the Holt Co. courthouse.
Nixon said that there is a lot of water coming, but that he has been working with the Missouri National Guard to help protect citizens, as well as property.
We TMre going to fight this flood from the Iowa border all the way to where the Missouri River hits the Mississippi, said Nixon. We TMre working on levees in a lot of areas as we speak and that TMs the good thing. This flood fight has already started.
Nixon also cautioned citizens of the potential physical dangers this flooding can cause.
There TMs going to be a lot of water moving in our area, said Nixon. People need to be careful. The power of water when it TMs moving can be significant, and the length of this one could be a couple of months.
Currently engaged in a three-front fight in Missouri, the southeast, southwest and now northwest parts of the state, Danner said he is commonly asked how the Missouri National Guard can keep up with these missions.
I think we can keep up with them relatively easily, said Danner. It TMs nothing we haven TMt done in Iraq or Afghanistan. This is no sweat.
Danner TMs confidence comes directly from the demonstrated capabilities of the Missouri National Guard troops. This is the fifth state emergency mobilization for the Missouri National Guard in 2011. Missouri TMs Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen are seasoned professionals with a wealth of diverse overseas and domestic response experience.
The Missouri National Guard is ready to support the state TMs citizens through a variety of missions including levee monitoring, sandbagging, emergency route clearance, and supporting first responders and law enforcement.
In addition to the flood mission, approximately 160 Missouri National Guard Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen are supporting tornado response operations in the Joplin area, including state oversight of the debris removal operations, supporting the disaster recovery jobs program, manning traffic control points, and presence patrols.
(Jennifer Archdekin with the U.S. Army wrote this article)