National Guard News

Serendipitous donation kick-starts Kansas Guard unit’s fundraising efforts

By Maj. Margaret Ziffer105th Mobile Public Affairs DetachmentKansas Army National Guard HIAWATHA, Kan. – The headquarters for the Kansas Army National Guard’s 2nd Battalion, 130th Field Artillery Brigade sits about 15 miles south of the Nebraska-Kansas border in the town of Hiawatha. Like many small towns in Kansas, Hiawatha has retained a distinct historic feel, with many original buildings and …

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Kansas team places first for National Guard maintenance award

By Sgt. 1st Class Jennifer Milnes105th Mobile Public Affairs DetachmentKansas Army National Guard HAYS, Kan. – The Kansas Army National Guard’s Field Maintenance Shop 1 in Hays placed first at the National Guard Bureau in the Tables of Distribution and Allowances category for the 2020 Army Award for Maintenance Excellence after facing months of challenges and preparation. The AAME program …

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Headstones at Arlington National Cemetery

Retired Sgt. 1st Class Harlan Dee Frey, Jr.

Retired Sgt. 1st Class Harlan Dee Frey, Jr., 74, of rural DuBois, Nebraska, was born on Sept. 28, 1946, in Seneca, Kansas, to Harlan Sr. and Neola (Kroemer) Frey. He was raised near Bern, where he received his schooling and graduated from Bern High School with the class of 1964. As a young man, Harlan enjoyed playing softball. He would …

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Headstones

Retired Col. Marion William Manion

Retired Col. Marion William Manion, 93, of Topeka, passed away Feb. 21, 2021. He was born March 23, 1927, in Humboldt, Kansas, the son of Marion M. and Elvira (Osborn) Manion. He was a graduate of Humboldt High School and attended West Point Military Academy, Kansas University, Washburn University, Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and United States Army Command …

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Headstones at Arlington National Cemetery

Retired Master Sgt. Robert Gregory Litton

Retired Master Sgt. Robert Gregory Litton, 75, of Andover, Kansas, passed away Feb. 16, 2021 in Wichita. Memorial graveside service will be 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021 at Ascension Cemetery, Bel Aire. Robert was born in Detroit, Michigan, Dec. 5, 1945, to the late Marie (Mattie) and Lee Roy Litton. He served in the U.S. Air Force during the …

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Retired Maj. William (Bill) Armstrong Smyth

Retired Maj. William (Bill) Armstrong Smyth, 79, of Raleigh, North Carolina, passed away Jan. 30, 2021. Bill was born Jan 8, 1942, in Topeka, Kansas. He graduated from Washburn University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1965. Bill married Karen Elizabeth Sprague May 16, 1987. He is survived by his wife 33 years; son Jason Philip Smyth, and his …

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Michael Eugene Lewis

Michael Eugene Lewis,  72, retired Kansas Air National Guard hydraulic technician, passed away Feb. 17, 2021. No services. Preceded in death by parents, Delbert and Maxine Lewis, and brother, Jessie Lewis. Survivors: daughter, Deva Robinson; brothers, Terry L. (Sharon) Lewis, Richard (Pam) Lewis; grandchildren, Mason Jenkins and Haleigh DeLong. Downing and Lahey Mortuary West. Online condolences can be left at …

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Retired 1st Sgt. Thomas Lee Nelson

Retired 1st Sgt. Thomas (Tom) Lee Nelson deployed for his final mission to the Great Beyond from his home in Page, Arizona, Feb. 11, 2021, at the age of 61 years. Tom was born the son of Alred Nelson and Patricia Twigg in Concord, California. He eventually made his way to Fort Riley after joining the United States Army and …

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Retired Senior Master Sgt. David Allen Butler

Retired Senior Master Sgt. David Allen Butler, 63, air quality control Inspector for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and retired senior master sergeant of the Kansas Air National Guard, passed away at home surrounded by family after a long courageous battle with cancer Feb. 13, 2021. David started his very full life on Oct. 3, 1957, in Ames, …

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Retired Sgt. 1st Class George B. Mergenmeier

Retired Sgt. 1st Class George B. Mergenmeier, 84, Topeka, Kansas, passed away peacefully Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021, at his home with his spouse by his side. George was born July 23, 1936, south of Seneca in Nemaha County, Kansas, to George W. and Stella (Lierz) Mergenmeier. He graduated from St. Peter and Paul Grade School in Seneca. He worked several …

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