Wisconsin National Guard looks ahead to the new year after a hectic 2020

The guard looks back at a historic year.
Published: Jan. 14, 2021 at 9:11 AM CST|Updated: Jan. 14, 2021 at 6:31 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The Wisconsin National Guard prepares for a new year following a historic year for domestic deployment in 2020, aiding in response, from COVID testing to assisting with work at election polls.

The state’s guard deployed over 3,800 troops in total over 2020 in response to civil unrest across the state. To assist in COVID response, the guard organized and staffed testing sites, deploying 1,400 troops to such sites throughout the year while administering over one million tests. The elections presented another chance for troops to assist in the community, and over 3,700 troops helped operate polling places throughout the elections held in 2020.

Despite a busy year, the guard maintained recruiting numbers, a crucial aspect of the National Guard to continue working across the state while also assisting branches of the military overseas. Despite schools going virtual and events becoming postponed or canceled, recruiters still managed to bring in a fresh crop of troops.

The challenging year presented some landmarks for the Wisconsin National Guard, including a historic effort to aid the community in various fields.

“It represented the largest sustained domestic mobilization we ever had in Wisconsin National Guard history,” said Major Joseph Trovato. “That dates all the way back to 1837.”

Major Trovato added that the National Guard takes a lot of lessons learned from 2020, but the busy year also showed them, and the state, just how flexible of a force the guard is, assisting in numerous ways across the entire state of Wisconsin. This year’s goal: Continue to become more agile, flexible, and able to adapt to any situation.

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