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LTC Rich Goldenberg (518) 786-4581
FOR RELEASE: Wednesday, Oct 03, 2007

Newest Guard Troop Takes New York Over the Top

Army National Guard Meets Fiscal 2007 Strength Goal

LATHAM, NY -- With the enlistment of Pfc. Keith Muniz from Buffalo, the New York Army National Guard achieved its strength objective for the fiscal year, exceeding 9,600 Citizen Soldiers among the ranks. Muniz received his oath of enlistment as a Citizen Soldier September 29 at the Niagara Falls Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS). He joins the Guard's Company D, 427th Brigade Support Battalion as a Wheeled Vehicle Operator. “I joined the National Guard so I could get the chance to serve my country while also going to college,” Muniz explained. “Being in the National Guard lets me do that.” His enlistment put the New York Army National Guard strength at 9,600 Soldiers - achieving its strength objective for the 2007 fiscal year that began Oct.1, 2006 and ended Sept. 30. Muniz, from Fredonia, N.Y., brings the strength of the New York Army National Guard to approximately 93 percent of authorized members, a culmination of the state’s resurgence in recruiting and retention across the force since last year. The state completed the year at 9,622 assigned Soldiers, growing the force with a net gain of 478 new personnel over last year. Nearly 2,500 new members came into the New York Army National Guard between October 2006 and September 2007 and approximately two-thirds of those Soldiers are new to military service. This is an 18 percent increase over the prior year's recruiting. “We have come through a period of great challenges and achievement, and the New York National Guard has come out on the other side a proven, competent and confident force,” said Major General Taluto, the Adjutant General and commander of the Army National Guard. “While I congratulate our leaders and Soldiers for stepping up and making our strength goal this year, this is really just our starting point for 2008.” This year also saw a drop in overall attrition in the force from last year’s 24 percent to approximately 21 percent in 2007, a marked improvement in the retention of New York’s Citizen Soldiers. “In my forty years of service with the New York National Guard, I have never seen such a devoted, committed and experienced force of Citizen Soldiers,” Taluto said. “This milestone by Private Muniz can be the beginning of our drive to see our units achieving 100 percent strength across New York,” he said. “All New Yorkers have come to realize that they can trust and depend on their National Guard no matter what happens, and that is the way it should be,” Taluto said. “Every time our Guardsmen and women are called upon they have delivered and we are extremely proud of their service to their communities, state and nation.” With Pfc. Muniz during his in-processing were Sgt. Maj. Larry Linville, the senior NCO for recruiting in Western N.Y. and Sgt. Clifford Withey from Buffalo's Recruiting and Retention Command. Photo cutline embedded with the digital image. Open in Adobe Photoshop for file information.
© NYS DMNA Press Release:Newest Guard Troop Takes New York Over the Top
URL: http://dmna.ny.gov/pressroom/?id=1191339060
Page Last Modified: Oct 03, 2007