Guard call-up affects SDSU community


Tasiyagnunpa Livermont

The National Guard call up has affected more than just the ROTC program at SDSU. The mobilization of the National Guard has made the “War on Terror” a tangible reality to SDSU students.

Sergeant Tamara Anderson, a SDSU microbiology major with the South Dakota National Guard 1742nd Transportation Company, was put on alert on December 26.

An alert status means that service men and women have been advised to put their personal lives in order in case of deployment.

For Anderson, that meant signing guardianship of her 4-year-old daughter over to her own mother during the deployment.

The little girl would have gone to stay with her father, but Anderson said that he is in a different Guard unit which will also probably be activated

“Maybe 10 years from now she’ll be proud of mom, but right now it’s going to be hard emotionally for her,” said Anderson.

Even though she hates leaving her daughter, she still enjoys the Guard.

“I love the Guard, I hate the idea of going [overseas], but I wouldn’t trade it for anything,” she said.

On January 8, most of the 727 Transportation Unit was mobilized, as well as the 1742nd Transportation Company from Flandreau.

Mobilization status means that they will be shipped out on a specific date.

About 10-12 college students are among those deployed in the unit said Major Marlon Thompson of Army National Guard in Brookings.

Officially, the transportaton companies are to be gone for a year, though if things go well, it could be less or with the possiblity of two years if it does not, Anderson said.

The Army Guard units will leave January 21.

The 114 Fighter Wing of the South Dakota Air National Guard was deployed to Turkey over the holiday break.

Eric Erickson, a senior airman with the 114 Fighter Wing and administrative assistant for the Students’ Association. Erickson said that he was deployed December 19 and arrived back in South Dakota last Sunday.

Money is one factor for many students joining the Guard.

“Basic training at technical school gives me college credit,” Justin Larson, senior airman, for the 114 Fighter Wing. He added that money for school also played a major role in his decision to enlist.

Erickson agreed.

“The Guard has helped out with educational benefits for college,” he said.

“I probably wouldn’t have been able to go to school,” Anderson said.

#1.887641:3295037143.jpg:guard.jpg:SSG Terry Beynon of the Brookings-based 727 Transportation Unit signals palletized loading system operator Sgt. Rich Harming that the machinery is operating correctly. The members of the unit, who have been practicing regularly at the softball complex, were recently mobilized for service.: