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Virgin Island National Guard prepares for Vigilant Guard 17

By Pfc. Chenelle Brady February 6, 2017

VIRGIN ISLANDS -- Members of the Virgin Islands Army and Air National Guard put together a series of hands-on training to help prepare for Vigilant Guard 17 exercise during annual training at the Joint Force Headquarters' drill hall floor February 2, 2017.

"The main focus for Vigilant Guard 17 is to assure that Information is flowing and the Joint Task Force knows how to run their operation," said Captain Carl Christopher, director of operations/strategic plans, from Virgin Islands Air National Guard Joint Force Headquarters. "By the leadership coming together, war gaming, going through everything line by line and developing products, we have something that we can take off the shelf and hit the ground running," said Christopher.

There are multiple staff sections that come together to make the joint task force. The purpose of Vigilant Guard 17 is to help determine how the joint task force will function when receiving missions and tasks from Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency (VITEMA) that will be coming into the organization, and accomplish these tasks. Process maps were created as a guide to specific events that will be happening and the way that they will deal with it. The JTF will need to understand how the information is supposed to flow when it comes to Defence Support of Civil Authorities operations. When a disaster happens they want to be able to respond to it properly and efficiently.

"Although there are a few things that may need to be fine-tune, we are heading in the right direction in accomplishing a mission and doing so successfully," said Maj. Alphonso John, the G-3 training specialist for the Joint Force Headquarters. "We are heading in the right direction," said John.

The mass exercise will test the ability of the military along with emergency personnel on how to communicate and work together as a team. Vigilant Guard 17 will take place in the Virgin Islands in the upcoming months.

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