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National Guard Bureau Chief visits Sioux City ANG Base

Chief of the National Guard Bureau U.S. Army Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson

Chief of the National Guard Bureau U.S. Army Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson, talks with members of the Sioux City media during a press conference following his visit to the Iowa Air National Guard’s 185th Air Refueling at Sioux City, Iowa, on August 9, 2021. Hokanson is both the first four star general and member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to visit the 185th Air Refueling Wing. (Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Tylon Chapman)

Chief of the National Guard Bureau U.S. Army Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson

Chief of the National Guard Bureau U.S. Army Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson, speaks with U.S. Air National Guard Col. Mark A. Muckey, 185th Air Refueling Wing Commander, Iowa Air National Guard, on August 9, 2021, at Sioux City, Iowa. Hokanson is both the first four star general and member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to visit the 185th Air Refueling Wing. (Air National Guard photo by Airman 1st Class Tylon Chapman)

SIOUX CITY, Iowa – For the first time in the history of the 185th Air Refueling Wing a sitting member of the Joint Chiefs visited the Iowa Air National Guard facility in Sioux City this week.

The National Guard Chief, General Daniel R. Hokanson was visiting the Iowa Air Guard unit at the invitation of 185th Air Refueling Wing Commander Colonel Mark Muckey in order to get a first had look at the mission of the Air Refueling Wing.

“This is another opportunity to showcase the amazing capability, the amazing talent of this team,” Muckey said during a press conference following the General’s visit.

Hokanson was given a tour of the Air Guard facility which included walking through the Air National Guard paint facility. During the visit, Hokanson said he was impressed by the unique relationship the unit has with the Siouxland community. Hokanson said he was particularly impressed with number of city and business leaders who were included as part of the historic visit.

“I was really stuck by the involvement of the entire community here,” Hokanson said, “to me that shows just how integral not only the Wing is to this community but the community is to the wing.”

Hokanson, whose background is as an U.S. Army aviator, was able to learn about the refueling wing’s continuous involvement in the global mission of the mission of the U.S. Air Force. During his visit unit leaders also had the opportunity to talk about the unit’s involvement as part of the state response to COVID-19 mitigation efforts, the Iowa National Guard involvement in last year’s derecho storm clean up as well as numerous, ongoing exercise and training activities.

“I’m really proud to be a part of the same organization as all the Airmen and Solders within the Iowa National Guard,” Hokanson said as part of his comments at the end of the visit.

During his comments Col. Muckey noted that Hokanson’s visit also coincides with the 75th anniversary of the 185th ARW in 2021. The Air Guard unit was established in Western Iowa following the 2nd World War in December of 1946.

Today the Sioux City Air National Guard base is one of 89 Air Guard facilities still operating along with other ANG facilities located in every U.S. state and territory.

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