Nevada Guard commits record 800 members to COVID-19 fight
By 2nd Lt. Emerson Marcus, 152 Airlift Wing
/ Published April 15, 2020
CARSON CITY, Nev. – About 700 more Nevada National Guard Soldiers and Airmen will enter the fight against COVID-19 this week, bringing the total number to about 800 – the largest state activation in Nevada National Guard history.
Gov. Steve Sisolak called 106 Soldiers and Airmen on state military orders April 6, two days after President Trump approved the state's major disaster declaration and additional federal funding. Those Guard members are managing donation and supply distribution operations.
The 700 additional Nevada Guard members will provide medical support, set up alternate care facilities, help at food banks and transport supplies. The majority will work in Las Vegas, where most of the Silver State's confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths have occurred.
Guard medical professionals already working COVID-19 response in their civilian professions will not be asked to report and will remain working their critically important full-time jobs.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency will approve all mission requests of the Nevada Guard for federally funded requests about the COVID-19 pandemic response.
The state of Nevada has requested large numbers of the Nevada National Guard force in the past for state activation, including about 400 Guard members during the post-Rodney King verdict riots in Las Vegas in 1992; at least 200 during the northern Nevada floods of 1997; and 140 in response to flooding in Lemmon Valley in 2017.
Across the nation, the National Guard provides a force of 450,000 Soldiers and Airmen throughout the 50 states, three territories and District of Columbia capable of contributing to the response effort. More than 31,600 Guard members are activated nationwide to help with the coronavirus response.