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    Employers of Oklahoma National Guardsmen watch their workers train for deployment

    Employers of Oklahoma National Guardsmen watch their workers train for deployment

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Christopher Bruce | Employers from across Oklahoma came together to watch their employees, who are also...... read more read more

    CAMP GRUBER, OK, UNITED STATES

    09.20.2017

    Story by Staff Sgt. Christopher Bruce  

    Oklahoma National Guard

    TULSA – Through a special program with the Department of Defense, several employers of Oklahoma National Guard Soldiers, received a glimpse into the type of training Guardsmen receive prior to deploying.

    Employers from across Oklahoma came together to watch their employees, who are also citizen-Soldiers, conduct pre-mobilization training at Camp Gruber, Oklahoma, on Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2017.

    Known as “Operation Boss Lift”, the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) sponsors the opportunity for employers to witness their Guardsman in their military job. The ESGR is a Department of Defense program that develops and promotes “supportive work environments for Service members in the Reserve Components through outreach, recognition, and educational opportunities.”

    Members of Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 244th Aviation Regiment from Tulsa, Oklahoma, transported approximately 30 employers on a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter to Camp Gruber.

    “We have to have the support of our families, the support of the American people and in the National Guard, the support from you,” said Col. Jon Greenhaw, Army aviation officer for the Oklahoma Army National Guard, as he addressed the employers. “We can’t do what we’re called to do without your support.”

    Once they arrived at Camp Gruber, the employers watched their Soldiers conduct a Combat Life Saver training mission complete with smoke, simulated artillery and opposition force actors. The scenario placed the Soldiers in a run-down village where they had to conduct a foot patrol, talk to a local leader and engage in simulated gunfire and artillery.

    Two pre-determined Soldier-actors faked injury, complete with Hollywood style makeup and special effects. The Soldiers then had to care for the wounded in a stressful environment using the combat lifesaver skills they learned.

    Fire Chief Bob Sharp of the Peninsula Fire Department in Cleveland, Oklahoma, has three Firefighters in his department who are also Oklahoma National Guardsmen. He came to the boss lift to watch one who is about to deploy.

    “We’re going to miss him, but he has a job to do,” Sharp said. “Freedom’s not free and we need him there too.”

    Sharp is in charge of a small fire department where losing any personnel is difficult. But he said he understands the calling his firefighters face.

    “I’m proud of them all," Sharp said. “I watched them grow up in the fire department and join the military.”

    The boss lift event was organized by the Chairman for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, Gary Foster.

    “It’s an opportunity for these employers to actually see what their people do in the military,” Foster said. “They got to see an actual combat scenario.”

    The ESGR is a Department of Defense program that develops and promotes “supportive work environments for Service members in the Reserve Components through outreach, recognition, and educational opportunities.” The program is mainly made up of volunteers. You can get more information about the Oklahoma ESGR program and volunteer at www.esgr.mil/ok

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 09.20.2017
    Date Posted: 09.27.2017 12:49
    Story ID: 248998
    Location: CAMP GRUBER, OK, US 
    Hometown: CAMP GRUBER, OK, US
    Hometown: CLEVELAND, OK, US
    Hometown: TULSA, OK, US

    Web Views: 613
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