National Day of the Deployed – Recognizing the Selfless Service and Sacrifice of our Airmen
By Senior Master Sgt. Beth Holliker, 180th Fighter Wing
/ Published October 26, 2020
Swanton, Ohio --
No longer considered a strategic reserve, today’s National Guard is a fully operational force of nearly 450,000 Citizen-Airmen and Citizen-Soldiers, who live, work and serve in communities throughout the country.
Of those 450,000 men and women serving in the National Guard, approximately 10% are deployed in every region around the world, on a daily basis, supporting America’s National Defense Strategy.
“On any given day, approximately 30,000 Guardsmen carry out federal missions around the world,” Gen. Joseph L. Lengyel, Chief, National Guard Bureau, highlighted in the 2021 National Guard Bureau Posture Statement. “And an additional 10,000 Guardsmen conduct state and federal missions within the United States and its territories.”
The 2021 Posture Statement also emphasized that in 2019, the Air National Guard supported more than 14,600 deployments to 52 countries, with more than 5,000 Airmen deployed around the world, at any time, in support of combatant commanders.
In 2019, more than 360 Airmen, assigned to the Ohio National Guard’s 180th Fighter Wing, supported deployments to five different countries and participated in four training deployments across the U.S.
2020 has proven to be another deployment heavy year with more than 400 180FW Airmen currently deployed to seven countries across the globe and another 70 of our Airmen deployed throughout Ohio in support of COVID-19 relief and civil unrest efforts.
Today we recognize not only the wing’s deployed Airmen who are working hard to contribute to the joint force efforts around the world, but also the Airmen here at home continuing to train and execute our 24/7 homeland mission, ensuring the 180FW remains ready for any future deployment taskings.
“While today, October 26, is the official observance of National Day of the Deployed, we continue to recognize our deployed Airmen and their families every day,” said Col. Michael DiDio, 180FW Commander. “The commitment and sacrifice of our Stinger Airmen and their families ensure that we remain operationally ready and engaged, enabling us to deliver the strategic depth required to remain at the forefront of our nation’s defense.”
National Day of the Deployed began as a small effort in 2006, when a North Dakota resident requested the state’s governor to sign a proclamation recognizing the selfless service and sacrifice of the thousands of troops deployed around the world.
In 2011, October 26 became officially recognized in all 50 states as National Day of the Deployed.