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    Georgia Guard Completes Domestic and Overseas Mission during Pandemic

    African Lion 2021 - Paladin Live Fire

    Photo By Sgt. 1st Class R.J. Lannom | A U.S. Army M109A6 Paladin howitzer with the Ellenwood-based Charlie Battery, 1st...... read more read more

    TAN TAN, MOROCCO

    06.17.2021

    Story by Sgt. 1st Class R.J. Lannom 

    78th Troop Command

    The Georgia Army National Guard is completing its second overseas training event during the COVID-19 pandemic. Approximately 640 Soldiers with the Georgia Army National Guard's Fort Benning-based 648th Manuever Enhancement Brigade and Macon-based 48th Infantry Brigade Combat Team deployed to the Tan Tan Training Area, Morocco, for exercise African Lion 21, June 7-18, 2021.

    African Lion 2021 is U.S. Africa Command's largest, premier, joint, annual exercise hosted by Morocco, Tunisia and Senegal, 7-18 June. More than 7,000 participants from nine nations and NATO train together to enhance readiness for U.S. and partner nation forces. AL21 is a multi-domain, multi-component, and multi-national exercise that employs a full array of mission capabilities to strengthen interoperability among participants.

    While vaccinating the force against COVID-19 continues, the health and safety of Georgia Guardsmen and participating nations remains the highest priority. Therefore, all Georgia Guardsmen were pre-screened, performed a two-week self-quarantine, attained a negative COVID-19 test before arrival to Morocco, and tested once more during in-processing for the exercise to verify the force's health.

    "Actions we took prior to deployment contributed significantly to the health and welfare of the Soldiers, protecting them from COVID-19 and other significant diseases affecting the region," said Maj. Shana Godfred-Cato, brigade surgeon, 648th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade. "We've spent significant time and resources vaccinating and testing Soldiers prior to deployment to ensure their safety."

    Prevention of COVID-19 continued as Guardsmen utilized standard preventative protocols throughout the exercise, including physical distancing, face coverings and vigorous hand-washing. Prevention of COVID-19 is paramount to ensure the safety of Georgia Guardsmen and ensure they meet training objectives.
    "All of the safety put into place by leadership and the Soldiers themselves contributed greatly to the prevention of COVID-19 during the exercise," said Godfred-Cato.

    Ensuring the health and safety of Georgia Guardsmen ensures units are ready to activate, mobilize, deploy and sustain operations.
    Over the last 15 months, the Georgia Army National Guard has completed domestic COVID-19 response missions, civil unrest missions in various locations throughout their home state, a no-notice federal activation in support of the 59th Presidential Inauguration in Washington D.C., and overseas training missions to the country of Georgia for Noble Partner 20 and the current deployment to African Lion 21.

    "In the beginning, COVID-19 severely impacted the state and nation. As we activated throughout the state, the Georgia National Guard implemented and adopted measures to mitigate and reduce the impact of COVID-19," said Lt. Col. Copeland Rowell, commander, 648th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade. "Based on our successful operations over the course of the last 15 months, our mitigation steps ensure the Georgia Guard remains a ready and relevant force for the state of Georgia and the United States Army."

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 06.17.2021
    Date Posted: 06.17.2021 05:16
    Story ID: 399133
    Location: TAN TAN, MA 

    Web Views: 118
    Downloads: 2

    PUBLIC DOMAIN