WASHINGTON, Dec. 13, 2010 — As Americans prepare to celebrate and give thanks amidst the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, I’d like to take a moment to recognize the 374th birthday of the National Guard and our Citizen-Warriors: those stationed throughout our Nation and those deployed across the globe.
Throughout your long and distinguished history, you have been a unique yet vital part of our Total Force, continually embodying your motto: Always Ready, Always There. From the front lines of the American Revolution to the shadow of the Hindu Kush, you have come from every state and territory, standing shoulder-to-shoulder and flying wingtip-to-wingtip with your brothers and sisters in arms.
The Guard’s contributions to our traditional military roles are vital, but the skill sets you bring to the fight are equally indispensible. From the State Partnership Program that conducts outreach to more than 40 partner nations to Agriculture Development Teams helping farmers in Afghanistan … whenever our Nation has called, the National Guard has answered.
Of course, these unique capabilities are only possible because of the very real service provided by those who support each member of the National Guard. For every Citizen-Warrior who serves, there is a family, an employer and a community who must also make sacrifices. Together, you demonstrate one of our country’s greatest attributes: the shared sense of responsibility and commitment that has enabled our Nation to meets its greatest challenges throughout our history.
On behalf of the Joint Chiefs, I thank the National Guard and its supporting communities for 374 years of service. Happy Birthday!
U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)