Va. National Guard helps Hurricane Harvey recovery

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Virginia National Guard aviation crews and Chesterfield County first responders conduct aviation rescue hoist training during the Max Creek Search and Rescue Exercise Aug. 13, 2016, in Pulaski County, Virginia. (PHOTO: Virginia National Guard)

SANDSTON, Va. — Forty Virginia National Guard soldiers and seven helicopters are headed from Virginia to help recovery operations in Texas following Hurricane Harvey. The crews were expected to leave Thursday morning.

“Possible missions would be search and rescue, aerial damage assessment and supply distribution,” a Virginia National Guard spokesperson said. “Three rescue technicians from the Chesterfield County Fire and Emergency Medical Service Scuba Rescue Team are also scheduled to deploy with the Guard.”

The Sandston-based 2nd Battalion, 224th Aviation Regiment will fly five UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters and Chesterfield-based Detachment 1, Alpha Company, 2nd Battalion, 151st Aviation Regiment will fly two UH-72 Lakota helicopters, according to the guard.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with all the people of Texas as they work to recover from the impact of Hurricane Harvey,” Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams, the Adjutant General of Virginia, said. “There is no higher honor for a Guard Soldier or Airman than serving your fellow Americans in their time of need, and I am confident the Virginia National Guard will help make a difference.”

No other Virginia National Guard forces are scheduled to deploy to Texas at this time, Williams added.

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