This week, America's Army National Guard celebrates its 375th anniversary. Quite obviously, the founding goes way back to a time shortly after the settling of the Massachusetts colony, when all "able-bodied" men, from 16 to 60, were required to join the colony's militia, training for its common defense. Our nation's Air Guard, now some 60-years old, was created following World War II, when the Air Force was separated from the Army to become a stand-alone military branch.
Both Georgia and South Carolina are blessed to have an abundance of Army and Air Guard units, citizen-soldiers and airmen, trained and ready, to serve our two-states, and/or the needs of our nation, whether overseas, as they have done since 9/11, or here at home. Men and women of the Guard, some active-duty, most, traditional Guardsmen, volunteers-all, committed to service, for the betterment and protection of both neighbors and nation.
While our country has evolved just a bit from the fledgling Massachusetts colonial times of 1636, with vigilance focused on domestic security, plus now, the call to aid communities caught in the path of natural disasters, the need for the Guard remains ever more-so today. Our thanks to those Americans who've stepped-up over the years, and through generations, to take on the missions and responsibilities assigned to our Army and Air Guard units, any time, and as we've been clearly-reminded over the past decade, any place that military-assistance, skill and courage are required. On this three-and-three-quarter-century anniversary, America remains privileged to have, and ever-grateful for, the presence of Guardsmen-at-the-ready.