Pennsylvania Army National Guard
The federal mission of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard is to provide combat-ready units for mobilization into the Armed Forces in time of war or national emergency, or at times as may be required by the President of the United States for the security of this nation. The state mission of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard, when summoned by the governor of the Commonwealth, is to provide trained personnel and units organized and equipped to function effectively in saving lives, protecting property and maintaining law and order and public safety when emergencies are beyond the capability of civil authorities.
The Pennsylvania Army National Guard maintains 129 armories, and is present in 96 communities.
As the second largest Guard in the nation, FY99 witnessed numerous state active duty call-ups for the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. CH-47 aircraft assisted firefighters in dousing a wildfire along the Susquehanna River. Carrying thousands of gallons of water, access from the air was the only method possible to fight the fires burning along the steep banks. CH-47 aircraft also fought wildfires in northeastern part of the state, both caused by the severe drought that gripped the Keystone State throughout the year.
In response to dry wells caused by the drought, water buffaloes were transported to several communities to ensure distribution of fresh water. The year ended abruptly with Hurricanes Floyd and Dennis. Hurricane Floyd pounded Philadelphia causing widespread flooding as some 400 Guard members were placed on state active duty to control access to flooded homes and transport people trapped by the high water.
While 1999 will be characterized as a year of lower-profile state active duty missions, for those citizens in need it was no low profile matter. They were very thankful that the Guard was there when they needed them most.
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