04.15.10

Leahy Launches Vermont National Guard YouTube Project: Postcards From Home

Vermonters Invited To Send Videos To Troops In Afghanistan

. . . General Dubie Submits First Video

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday unveiled a new initiative to connect Vermonters with members of the Vermont National Guard currently serving in Afghanistan and Vermonters in the other military services stationed across the globe. The Vermont National Guard YouTube Project: Postcards From Home, allows Vermonters to post their own YouTube videos thanking the Vermont troops for their service, wherever they may be stationed.

There are currently 1300 men and women of the Vermont National Guard in Afghanistan.  As members of the 86th Brigade, they are participating in security, reconstruction and stability operations.  There are also 45 Vermont Air National Guard members who are en route to Saudi Arabia where they will help protect a U.S. military base.  In addition, 66 members of the Vermont Army National Guard Air Ambulance Blackhawk company will head to Iraq later this year.

Leahy said, “The internet has become a channel for communicating with family, friends and those we’re thinking about, including our Guard members.  This project harnesses the internet’s assets – the speed, accessibility, and flexibility -- to thank the Vermont Guard members for their service and to let them know how much we are thinking of them.  Personalized messages from home help us express our gratitude for their sacrifices.”

Leahy and his wife Marcelle posted their own video for the project, and they invite Vermonters of all ages, from school children to seniors, and from all corners of the state to create their own videos for the project.  Major General Michael Dubie, Vermont’s Adjutant General who commands the nearly 4,000 members of the Vermont Army and Air National Guard created his own message, which is the first video entry.  Dubie briefed Vermont state legislators Thursday morning on the deployment status of the Vermont Guard and those members currently in Afghanistan.

A description of the project, guidelines for videos and directions on how to participate can be found at www.leahy.senate.gov/PostcardsFromHome.  Senator Leahy has posted an introductory and instructional video, as well as his personal message, which can be found on YouTube at www.youtube.com/SenatorPatrickLeahy.

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