(December 19, 2017) Lawmakers and congressional staff celebrated the 381st birthday of the National Guard during an event at the Rayburn House Office Building planned and hosted by NGAUS and the National Guard Educational Foundation.
“The honor is all mine,” retired Brig. Gen. Roy Robinson, the NGAUS and NGEF president, said at the cake-cutting ceremony and reception. “I’ve spent my entire life in the National Guard. I can’t imagine having a better job than to walk these halls with you and talk about the National Guard.”
Gen. Joseph L. Lengyel, the chief of the National Guard Bureau, told how proud he is of America’s oldest force. Lengyel finished his speech by thanking everyone in attendance for supporting the Guard.
Lengyel and Robinson were joined by Lt. Gen. Timothy J. Kadavy, the director of the Army Guard, and Lt. Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson, the vice chief of the National Guard Bureau, in cutting the birthday cake using a replica of the sword carried by Marquis de Lafayette, who fought with American troops during the Revolutionary War.
On Dec. 13, 1636, the first militia regiments in North America were organized in Massachusetts. Today, the Guard is an all-volunteer force of approximately 450,000 men and women. About 20,000 Guardsmen are deployed overseas or soon will be.
“The 381st Guard Birthday reception went really well,” said Anne Armstrong, the deputy director of NGEF. “We had a capacity crowd and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.”
The event was sponsored by AM General; BAE Systems; Boeing; The Roosevelt Group; Textron; USAA; Cobham; Dentrust Optimized Care Solutions; Donohoe Real Estate Services; Humana Military; Oshkosh Defense; Raydon; Saab North America; Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company; Ameripack; Endeavor Robotics; Grantham University; Laser Shot and PULAU Corporation.