Military Wiki
Headquarters, State Area Command
Kentucky Army National Guard
Kentucky State Area Command SSI.jpg
Kentucky STARC Shoulder Sleeve insignia
Country United States
Allegiance Kentucky
Branch Army National Guard
Type ARNG Headquarters Command
Part of Kentucky National Guard

Seal of the Army National Guard

The Kentucky Army National Guard is a component of the United States Army and the United States National Guard. Nationwide, the Army National Guard comprises approximately one half of the US Army's available combat forces and approximately one third of its support organization. National coordination of various state National Guard units are maintained through the National Guard Bureau.

Kentucky Army National Guard units are trained and equipped as part of the United States Army. The same ranks and insignia are used and National Guardsmen are eligible to receive all United States military awards. The Kentucky Guard also bestows a number of state awards for local services rendered in or to the state of Kentucky.

The Kentucky Army National Guard is composed of approximately 61 armories and is present in 53 communities, the headquarters is located in Frankfort, KY[1]



National Guard units can be mobilized at any time by presidential order to supplement regular armed forces, and upon declaration of a state of emergency by the governor of the state in which they serve. Unlike Army Reserve members, National Guard members cannot be mobilized individually (except through voluntary transfers and Temporary DutY Assignments TDY), but only as part of their respective units.

Active Duty Callups

For much of the final decades of the twentieth century, National Guard personnel typically served "One weekend a month, two weeks a year", with a portion working for the Guard in a full-time capacity. The current forces formation plans of the US Army call for the typical National Guard unit (or National Guardsman) to serve one year of active duty for every three years of service. More specifically, current Department of Defense policy is that no Guardsman will be involuntarily activated for a total of more than 24 months (cumulative) in one six year enlistment period (this policy is due to change 1 August 2007, the new policy states that soldiers will be given 24 months between deployments of no more than 24 months, individual states have differing policies).


The Kentucky State Guard became the Kentucky National Guard in 1912, when a new federal law regulating the militia came into effect. The new system set training standards for state units and established more efficient procedures for mobilizing the Guard into federal service.

The procedures were tested in 1916 when violence from the revolution going on in Mexico spilled across the border. Nearly all the Kentucky National Guard joined units from many other states on patrol along the Mexican border. For the first time, Kentucky troops used trucks and machine guns on active duty. Guardsmen returned from Texas in 1917 just in time to be mustered into federal service for duty in World War I.

The 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery Regiment of the Kentucky Army National Guard was ordered to service in Vietnam in late 1968. The unit supported the regular 101st Airborne Division. The Battalion's C Battery lost nine men killed and 32 wounded when North Vietnamese troops overran Fire Base Tomahawk on June 19, 1969.[2]

Soldiers of the Kentucky Army National Guard's 133rd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment deployed to Bosnia for NATO's Operation Joint Forge. The unit provided Public Affairs support to the commander of Task Force Eagle and Multi-National Division.

The 149th Armored Brigade traces its recent history to the activation of XXIII Corps Artillery on 1 October 1959. It was then converted and redesignated HHC 149th Armored Brigade on 1 November 1980.[3] A military unit has been active in the Louisville area since the 149th Infantry Regiment Combat Team was activated after World War II. The U.S. Army Center for Military History attributes lineage and honors to the Louisville unit further back than that. In 1984-85, the brigade included the 1st and 2nd Battalions of the 123rd Armored Regiment, and the 1st Battalion, 149th Infantry Regiment, and the 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery.[4] It served a period of being an infantry brigade, circa 2006, including a deployment to Iraq, where it assumed responsibility for COB Speicher, Tikrit, on 1 June 2006.[5] The brigade now appears to be the 149th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade,[6] whose activation took place in the Kentucky 2006-2007 fiscal year (July 2006-end of June 2007).[7] Its badge was redesignated as the 149th MEB badge effective 1 September 2008.[8]

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear was quoted as saying that the January 2009 storm that blew through Kentucky was the “worst natural disaster” to ever hit the commonwealth. Nearly all of the 120 counties were affected in some way, and almost every Kentucky Guardsman was called up to assist citizens from the Bluegrass to the Mississippi River. More than 4,600 National Guard soldiers and airmen in Kentucky were called up for duty.


  1. Kentucky Army National Guard "Kentucky Army National Guard". Global Security. Kentucky Army National Guard. Retrieved 20 May 2012. 
  2. "Kentucky: National Guard History eMuseum – Summary". 
  3. and Lineage and Honors, 149th Infantry Regiment
  4. David Isby and Charles Kamps Jr., Armies of NATO's Central Front, Jane's Publishing Company, 1985, 383.
  5. 149th Guard Complements 25th ID at Speicher (page 3), Hawaii Army Weekly, 29 September 2006
  6. Kentucky Army National Guard, MACOMS: 149th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade
  7. Kentucky Department of Military Affairs, Annual Report 2006-2007, 64
  8. The Institute of Heraldry, 149th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, accessed February 2014.

Further reading

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