Sunday, January 18, 2009

Maryland National Guard Supports President-elect's 'Whistle-stop' Tour

Special to American Forces Press Service

Jan. 18, 2009 - About 100 Maryland National Guard members provided support alongside the U.S. Secret Service in Baltimore yesterday during President-elect Barack Obama's "whistle-stop" train trip, Maryland Guard officials said. The Baltimore stop was Obama's last stop before reaching Washington, D.C. The president-elect took the train trip from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., to retrace part of the route taken by Abraham Lincoln to his inauguration in 1861.

The Guardsmen were among the more than 40 federal, state and city agencies that helped ensure the president-elect's safety as his train pulled into Baltimore's Pennsylvania Station, officials said.

"This type of mission reflects just how adaptable the Maryland National Guard is, particularly where it involves support to civilian authorities right here at home," Army Brig. Gen. James A. Adkins, adjutant general for Maryland, said.

"Immediately following the November election, we began planning for what we anticipated would be a support role during the inauguration," Adkins continued. "The Guard has been involved in each and every presidential inauguration, and we're extremely proud to continue this rich tradition."