COLUMBUS — Ohio National Guard members who deployed May 30 to support local law enforcement in Columbus and Cleveland returned to their home stations Wednesday after successfully completing their mission, according to the Ohio Adjutant General's Department.
“The Ohio National Guard responded at a moment's notice to assist with protecting lives and property,” said Gov. Mike DeWine. “I'm proud of the role our Guard members had in providing a safe environment for Ohioans to voice their concerns and lawfully exercise their First Amendment rights.”
At the direction of Gov. DeWine, approximately 1,200 Ohio National Guard Soldiers and Airmen were activated as part of the National Guard Response Force (NGRF). The NGRF comprises multiple, temporary task forces, which perform their mission under the command and control of the state of Ohio and the lead law enforcement agency the force is supporting.
“I commend the outstanding work performed by the men and women who were assigned to this mission,” said Maj. Gen. John C. Harris Jr., Ohio adjutant general. “They carried out their duties to assist law enforcement authorities with professionalism and respect for every citizen. We serve this nation and state to safeguard our fellow citizens’ rights, including their right to protest peacefully.”
The Guard members were called to assist law enforcement after disturbances erupted during ongoing protests. They provided traffic control, site security, and critical infrastructure protection.
The Ohio National Guard has been serving in communities for more than two months, making a difference for the state by delivering much needed food to those most vulnerable, providing medical assistance, and collecting samples at congregate care facilities such as nursing homes.