BISMARCK, N.D. – Gov. Doug Burgum expressed his gratitude for North Dakota National Guard soldiers as they returned home today from a monthlong deployment to the U.S.-Mexico border. Approximately 100 members of the Wahpeton-based 188th Engineer Company served a 30-day mission in support of Operation Lone Star, a joint operation between the Texas Department of Public Safety and Texas Military Department.
Burgum, commander-in-chief of the North Dakota National Guard, and the Guard’s adjutant general, Maj. Gen. Al Dohrmann, visited soldiers from the 188th at the border earlier this month, thanking them for their work to support efforts by state and federal officials to secure the border, stop illegal immigration and disrupt drug and human trafficking.
“Border security is national security, and these North Dakota National Guard soldiers made the most of their time at the border, doing an outstanding job of supporting Operation Lone Star to limit illegal crossings and enhance public safety,” Burgum said. “They have our deepest gratitude and respect for their service, professionalism and vigilant work to protect our nation.”
Burgum deployed the 188th Engineer Company in response to a request from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for states to send available resources to combat illegal activity at the border and ensure the safety and security of all Americans.
“It is a testament to their dedication and preparedness that they were able to accomplish so much in such a short amount of time,” Dohrmann said. “The sacrifices made by not only the Soldiers but also the families and employers is greatly appreciated. Thank you to all the 188th Engineer Company Soldiers for their selfless sacrifice and unwavering commitment to protecting our state and nation.”
The North Dakota National Guard still has approximately 125 members of the 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment with UH-72A Lakota helicopters serving at the southwest border on federal status in support of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The yearlong deployment began in October 2022 and followed the return of 125 members of the 957th Engineer Company’s Multi-Role Bridge Company.
North Dakota National Guard units have provided support at the southwest border during more than 10 deployments since 2006.