As the final preparations are being made ahead of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration on Wednesday, some of Nebraska National Guard members are preparing for anything that may happen.
Tens of thousands of National Guard members from across the country, including Nebraska and Iowa, are arriving in the Capital to help keep everyone safe. On Friday 300 members of the Nebraska National guard began departing for the inauguration. On Sunday, 6 News spoke with a Nebraska Guardsman, who is a 17-year veteran of the National Guard, from his hotel in DC.
“I was at work Friday morning when I got the call that more National Guard soldiers were needed for the inauguration,” said Staff Sgt. Blair Talley, noting he quickly packed his bags and boarded a flight the next day; missing his son’s birthday party.
“It’s not the first time a person’s had to sacrifice for the guard,” said the Staff Sgt. “You miss birthdays, you miss anniversaries, but you’ve made a commitment to wear the uniform.”
Soldiers were mainly called in to stand on guard in the aftermath of the recent attack on the Capitol. “The National Guard was requested to come in and support the DC National Guard who in turn are supporting law enforcement authorities,” said Major General, Daryl Bohac, Adjutant General, Nebraska National Guard.
“A good portion of the Nebraska contingency arrived last night at Andrews Air Force Base,” said Staff Sgt. Talley. “We downloaded our gear, received an in-briefing, and moved to our housing locations in the metro dc area.” As for the exact details of their mission, they’re waiting on word. “At this point, we’re currently waiting on further instructions on what our mission will be and how we can be of assistance for the inauguration,” said Staff Sgt. Talley.
The National Guard’s Military Police, along with Infantry and Air Force Special Forces were sworn in by DC police Sunday evening. “They will be designated as special deputized police officers and they will have certain authorities within the rules of force that they will be allowed to use within the metro area,” said Staff Sgt. Talley.
Talley says whatever role he ends up playing, he’s honored to be serving in DC. “I’ve never been a part of a presidential inauguration. I’ve done multiple other ventures and operations with the Nebraska National Guard, but never something of this magnitude.”