The following is a release from the 122nd Fighter Wing.
FORT WAYNE, Ind. — Two Public Affairs members of the 122nd Fighter Wing to perform duty supporting the 58th Presidential Inauguration. Master Sgt. Darin Hubble, 122nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs Superintendent and Staff Sgt. Rana Franklin, 122nd Fighter Wing Community Engagement Manager will serve in public affairs roles as part of the Joint Task Force-District of Columbia National Guard, the week of the celebrated event.
Representing the Indiana National Guard they were selected to work in their military specialties in order to support the Photo and Broadcasting Journalist Branch and the Media Engagement Branch of the JTF-DC Public Affairs team.
One Hundred Forty One members of the Indiana National Guard will support, Operation Strong Guardian, roughly 7,500 National Guard Soldiers and Airmen from about 40 states, territories and the District of Columbia. This support is at the request of local civilian authorities as well as our federal government agency partners. National Guard Soldiers and Airmen will be assisting local civilian authorities with traffic control, crowd management among other activities. This is to ensure that the hundreds of thousands of spectators are able to move around smoothly and safely before, during and after the inauguration events.
“Overall I am pleased with the state of our wing,” said Col. Patrick Renwick, Commander 122nd Fighter Wing. “This is another strong example of members of the 122nd Fighter Wing reaching new heights to achieve the mission! The professionalism of the Blacksnakes is second to none, we are the Proven Choice!”
This military ceremonial support by National Guardsmen dates back to 1798 when Gen. George Washington began his inaugural journey from Mount Vernon, Va. to New York City. Local militias joined his inaugural procession as it passed through towns along the route. Once Washington arrived in New York City, a presidential escort composed of members of the regular Army, local militia units (the modern-day National Guard), and Revolutionary War veterans accompanied him to Federal Hall for the presidential oath. The military and the National Guard has continued this tradition of inaugural support ever since.
“Serving at the 2017 Presidential Inauguration is a resounding testament to the readiness of the Air National Guard and how critical we are to the larger mission. But even more so, it is a humbling opportunity for guard members to support the democracy and freedom of the United States, and that speaks to the “what” and “why” we raise our right hands in the first place,” said Franklin.