The ceremony, organized by MATS management and Fastport Inc., represents a commitment by employers of National Guard and Reserve personnel to support their military service and the tenets of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, said Bullock. The effort builds bridges with corporate America and promotes the backing of citizen soldiers, especially while they’re on deployment.
Fifty-three percent of the U.S. Army’s 1 million-person strength is in its National Guard and Reserve units, said its acting secretary, Patrick Murphy, a former congressman from Pennsylvania and an ex-Army officer who served two tours in Iraq.
“When the president of the United States calls 9-1-1, he calls the Army,” Murphy declared. He recalled that part of his officer training in the 1990s was at nearby Fort Knox, Ky.
Kentucky’s ESGR chairman, Major General (Retired) Allen Youngman, said, “Since Sept. 11, 2001, more than 16,000 Kentucky Guard and Reserve members have left their families and employers to serve in overseas contingency operations.