Wendell H. Ford Regional Training Center Celebrates its 50th Anniversary

The training center is named after Wendell Ford, U.S. Senator and 53rd Governor of Kentucky and only sat on 29 acres when it first opened. (Courtesy photo)

GREENVILLE, Ky. – Kentucky’s main training center for the Kentucky National Guard celebrated its 50th anniversary with a ceremony honoring those who have helped lay the groundwork for the success of the training site Sept. 25. 

Wendell H. Ford Regional Training Center (WHFRTC) is constructed on 8,500 acres of reclaimed strip-mine land and features live-fire ranges, hardened bivouac sites as well as many other necessary amenities to make it an effective training site for the Soldiers in the region.

The training center is named after Wendell Ford, U.S. Senator and 53rd Governor of Kentucky and only sat on 29 acres when it first opened.

“This celebration is a reflection on what WHFRTC used to be to what it is today, a coal mine to a training center,” said Lt. Col. J.B. Richmond, Garrison Training Center deputy commander.  “In the early 1990’s the National Guard Bureau and Kentucky leadership developed this area as the regional training center for the Kentucky National Guard.” 

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The site is versatile and flexible to the ever-changing needs of the Guard.

The crowd listens to CW 5 Joe Wilkins (ret.), training site supervisor, talks about his memories working at the main training center for the Kentucky National Guard during its celebration of its 50th anniversary honoring those who have helped lay the groundwork for the success of the training site Sept. 25.  (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Benjamin Crane)


The site also has complete year-round accommodations, to include barracks and quarters for nearly 500 troops, a 400-seat dining hall, a drill hall and modern learning center for computer simulator training.

“The vision the leaders had 50 years ago and how it’s evolved has made it a first class combat training center,” stated Brig. Gen. Scott Campbell, deputy adjutant general.  “WHFRTC is our own premier training site that supports our Guard right here in the commonwealth.”

YouTube Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_wFj7CZU30&t=1s

Other features of the training site include their controlled humidity storage complex, complete maintenance facilities for military equipment, an engagement skills training center, an obstacle course and a 4,200 ft. grass runway that a C-130 Hercules could land on.

A framed photo aerial photo of the Wendell H. Ford Regional Training Center is displayed during the 50th anniversary ceremony honoring those who have helped lay the groundwork for the success of the training site Sept. 25 The site is the states main training center for the Kentucky National Guard.  (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Benjamin Crane)
 
 
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