Lt Governor Praises Kentucky National Guard Troops at Derby

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Photo and stories by Spc. Michelle Waters/133rd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

Lt. Governor Daniel Mongiardo stands beside Pfc Joshua Smithson, a member of the 198th Military Police Battalion, and Pfc Joshua Reynolds, of the 617th Military Police Company, to thank them for their support during the Kentucky Derby in Louisville May 1, 2010.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (May 1, 2010) — While thousands cheered on for their favorite thoroughbreds this weekend, members of the Kentucky Air and Army National Guard stood ready to support local agencies in any capacity they needed during the Kentucky Derby May 1.

About 300 Kentucky Guardsmen were present during Derby, in the infield and behind the scenes, to serve as security detail at Churchill Downs, working at traffic control points, and provided logistical and transportation support.

Pfc. Brian E. McDaniel, a member of the 1103rd Military Police Company, stands guard over the trophy and the garland of roses that is presented to the winner of the Kentucky Derby in Louisville on May 1, 2010.

“The Kentucky National Guard is the main reason why the Kentucky Derby runs so smoothly,” said Lt Governor Daniel Mongiardo.  “They always help us put our best foot forward, and they are great ambassadors to the Commonwealth.”

The Kentucky National Guard routinely works with government agencies to provide support for events like the Kentucky Derby as well as assistance for state emergencies.  The working relationship among them continues to strengthen the communication and expectation between military and civilian organizations.

“The Kentucky Derby is a global event. People come from all over to experience this.  We are always vulnerable to be a target, and having the presence of our National Guard keeps us protected and focused,” Mongiardo said.

Master Sgt. Kenny L. Smith, a member of the 617th Military Police Company, stands watch over the infield at his security post during the Kentucky Derby in Louisville on May 1, 2010.

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