October 1, 2002, 14:53 EDT

Virginia Army Guard units to be ordered to active duty

BLACKSTONE, Va. - Maj. Gen. Claude Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, announced that some units of the 1st Brigade, 29th Infantry Division (Light), Virginia Army National Guard, are being mobilized for active federal service. They are:

  • Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 116th Infantry - Lynchburg, Va.
  • Company A, 2nd Battalion, 116th Infantry, Charlottesville and Lynchburg, Va.
  • Company B, 2nd Battalion, 116th Infantry, Lexington, Va.
  • Company C, 2nd Battalion, 116th Infantry, Harrisonburg, Va.

These units will enter active federal service beginning Nov. 1, 2002. They began pre-mobilization training today in preparation for entry on federal active duty. The pre-mobilization training will take place at the units' home armories as well as Fort Pickett, which is located in Blackstone, Va.

This mobilization is in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, the United States' response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. These units will be ordered to active federal service for a one-year period beginning November 1, 2002. The Secretary of the Army may extend this period an additional 12 months based on operational needs or other requirements. These units will initially deploy to Fort Bragg, N. C. The unit's mission and deployment location were not provided. Williams declined to speculate on what the final mission or deployment location of these units may be.

Williams pointed out several Virginia Army National Guard units are currently serving in a federal status. The 246th Field Artillery which has units stationed in Danville, Martinsville, Chatham, and South Boston, and E Battery, 111th Field Artillery which is located in Sandston, entered active federal service on August 1, 2002. The units are currently serving at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. He noted that Company B, 3rd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group, stationed at Fort A. P. Hill, Va. is currently deployed in Afghanistan.

He also said other Virginia Army National Guard units of the 29th Infantry Division, including elements of the Division headquarters, Ft. Belvoir; 224th Aviation Battalion, Sandston; and 229th Engineer Battalion, Fredericksburg had returned earlier this year from a deployment to Bosnia-Herzegovina. These units supported the NATO Stabilization Force mission in the Balkans.

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