SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — Governor JB Pritzker announced Friday that about 160 members of the Illinois Army National Guard will be sent to Louisiana to help with the Hurricane Ida relief efforts.
“As states across the nation recover from the damage of Hurricane Ida and the continued impacts of climate change, the State of Illinois stands ready to help,” said Gov. Pritzker. “Illinois’ brave members of the National Guard are exceptional at everything they do and will work alongside local rescue teams to support impacted residents and communities.”
“Our thoughts are with our fellow American affected by Hurricane Ida, which hit Louisiana with historic force exactly 16 years after Hurricane Katrina,” said Maj. Gen. Rich Neely, the Adjutant General of Illinois and the Commander of the Illinois National Guard. “We are proud of our Soldiers and Airmen as they prepare to respond, much like the Illinois National Guard did 16 years ago for Hurricane Katrina. We are also thankful for their service and for the support of their families and employers.”
According to officials, the Louisiana Army National Guard has recently requested assistance through an approved Emergency Management Assistance Compact for manpower and equipment to assist with commodities distribution, general search and rescue, storm debris removal and route clearance, and general security and curfew enforcement.
Officials said the 33rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, headquartered in Urbana, has been tasked with providing about 45 Soldiers from Company A, 634th Brigade Support Battalion, based in Mattoon, to provide commodities transport via military flat-rack vehicles. The 634th BSB will also provide an officer and noncommissioned officer as a command team, plus two combat medics. The 404th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, with headquarters in Normal will provide about 98 Soldiers from the 661st Engineer Company (Horizontal), based in Macomb for potential debris removal and route clearance missions.