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Ohio National Guard members return home from inauguration duty, assisting in guarding state capital

500 guard members helped protect the Ohio Statehouse, while an additional 1,000 assisted with security at the inauguration in Washington D.C.
Credit: U.S. National Guard photo by Senior Master Sgt. Ralph Branson

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Ohio National Guard has announced that its members who deployed to both Washington D.C. and Columbus recently have returned home from duty.

500 members of the Ohio National Guard were in Columbus, assisting local and state authorities at the Ohio Statehouse. An additional 1,000 members helped provide security and other support services in Washington D.C. during last week's presidential inauguration. 

“I want to thank every Citizen-Soldier and Citizen-Airman who provided a service to their fellow Americans,” Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said in a statement. “Their presence and professionalism helped support a peaceful transition of power and provided a safe environment for people to peacefully express their opinions.”

The Ohio National Guard’s Homeland Response Force was activated and placed on standby in the National Capital Region, as were personnel and equipment for communications and food service. In total, more than 26,000 National Guard men and women from 50 states, three territories, and the District of Columbia supported federal and D.C. agencies for the Jan. 20 presidential inauguration.

“This is what the National Guard’s for — to be ready at a moment’s notice to help the state and nation,” said Maj. Gen. John C. Harris Jr., Ohio adjutant general. “I couldn’t be more proud of our members for answering the call in such a manner.”

Credit: Ohio National Guard/Sgt. 1st Class Chad Menegay
Pvt. Austin Curtis (from left), Sgt. Seth Handy and Spc. Logan Searcy, all military policeman with the 323rd Military Police Company, based in Toledo, Ohio, stand guard Jan. 17, 2021, at the Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio. Several hundred Ohio National Guard members were called to state active duty to protect Ohio, its citizens, and public buildings and property in anticipation of potential public demonstrations related to the U.S. presidential inauguration on Jan. 20.

According to the Ohio National Guard, there are currently are more than 1,000 members deployed for other federal missions throughout the world. Another 1,000 are supporting the state’s COVID-19 response efforts, including food banks, temporary medical support at nursing facilities, and community pop-up testing sites.

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Editor's Note: The below story aired on January 12, 2021

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