Wisconsin National Guard soldiers return from border deployment

The soldiers returned home just in time for Thanksgiving
Gen. Glen VanHerck, commander of the North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S....
Gen. Glen VanHerck, commander of the North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command, and Sgt. Maj. James Porterfield, NORAD and USNORTHCOM Command senior enlisted leader, present a challenge coin to Sgt. Cameron Treuthardt of the Wisconsin Army National Guard’s 229th Engineer Vertical Construction Company during an Oct. 14 coin ceremony at Joint Task Force North Headquarters, Fort Bliss, Texas. Treuthardt was recognized for accomplishments during his deployment to the Southwest Border in an active-duty status under USNORTHCOM. U.S. Northern Command is providing Mobile Surveillance Camera operators, Intelligence analysts, and aviation support operations to the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Customs and Border Protection.(Sgt. 1st Class Lerone Simmons | U.S. Army Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Lerone Simmons)
Published: Nov. 22, 2022 at 9:35 AM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Dozens of Wisconsin Army National Guard soldiers returned home just in time for Thanksgiving this year. After being mobilized a month before the holiday last year, they began arriving back in the Badger State earlier this month - leaving enough time to help with the turkey and stuffing.

According to the U.S. Army, nearly 130 members of the Guard’s 229th Engineer Company, based in Prairie du Chien and Richland Center, had deployed to the southwestern border to aid the U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The Army noted that while serving, the company earned the Army Safety Excellence streamer and was a top-five unit in Task Force Legion for safety, physical fitness, training, and community service.

The first soldiers made it back to Wisconsin on Nov. 9, with the rest touching down in the following days. Their return came a little more than 13 months after they shipped out on Oct. 6, 2021, to join thousands of other service members who were deployed to the southwest border at the request of the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security. The Army pointed out members of the 229th racked up nearly 1 million miles, providing detection and monitoring support for border patrol agents.

The company had last mobilized in 2020 for operations closer to home. In that year, they helped fight the COVID-19 pandemic by working on specimen collection teams and assisted at polling locations that were shorthanded because of a lack of volunteers. They previously have been deployed to Saudi Arabia in 1990, Iraq in 2003, and Afghanistan in 2012, the Army noted.