Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Horrific Boston Marathon Explosions - National Guard Ready to Respond

There were more than 400 members of the Massachusetts National Guard on hand for the Boston marathon on Monday, tasked with helping to keep the route clear for the 27,000 runners who registered to race the 26.2-mile course from Hopkinton, MA to Boston.

One article published before the race quoted Pfc. Matthew S. Knowlton, a military policeman assigned to a spot at the starting line.  Knowlton said, “This is a very positive setting, I’m just happy to be here. There are a lot of people here but it’s a great crowd.”

But, as we all know by now, a day that began like the many previous ones in which the Guard has been called upon to assist local law enforcement at the race took a decidedly different and unbelievably tragic turn.

National Guard: Always Ready
Photo from MSN
Video from the scene posted on the National Guard website and broadcast on countless media outlets shows Guard members among the first responders, rushing toward the injured by tearing down the barricades they were protecting just moments before.

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick highlighted the work of the Guard when he explained in a press conference that the Guard was securing the scene and limiting access to it.  He has noted that their work will be ongoing for the next few days.

In addition, President Obama heralded the Guard's assistance when he said, "Boston police, firefighters, and first responders as well as the National Guard responded heroically, and continue to do so as we speak."

By early yesterday morning, more then 1,000 members of the Massachusetts National Guard as well as Guard members from nearby states had descended on Boston to provide support.

As our hearts mourn for the people affected and the whole city of Boston, we also salute the bravery of the many National Guard members who took action immediately and selflessly in a most unexpected and horrific emergency.

Today, more than ever, commit to supporting our troops by registering to hire heroes on the Center for America website.

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