|Story & photo by Alex Hughes, 32nd Infantry Brigade
Combat Team Public Affairs Office
On June 18 employers from across Wisconsin converged on Fort McCoy to
see firsthand the training and experiences their employees go through
during annual training with the 32nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team (IBCT).
Employers from companies such as Harley-Davidson Motor Co., Oshkosh
Truck, UW-Stout and many others participated in the 32nd IBCT Boss Lift,
an event coordinated through Employer Support of Guard and Reserve (ESGR).
The ESGR is a Department of Defense sanctioned program made up of more
than 100 volunteers and three full-time employees.
Employers participating in the
Boss Lift at Fort McCoy learn to eat a meal, ready-to-eat during
a lunch break with their Soldiers.
Employers had the opportunity to ride on a Blackhawk helicopter,
visit a live-fire range, watch Humvee Egress Assistance Training, tour
the 32nd IBCT’s Tactical Operations Center, and eat a meal, ready-to-eat
lunch in the field with their Soldiers.
“It’s phenomenal. Really, it’s incredibly interesting,” said Travis D.
Turner, Area Manager for an Oshkosh corporation, about the Boss Lift.
“The Boss Lift was designed to show employers what their Soldiers are
doing when they train or mobilize,” explained Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Kerry G.
Denson, Boss Lift coordinator for the Wisconsin ESGR. In this case, ESGR
can explain to employers what Soldiers do during the 32nd Brigade’s
“ESGR also sheds light on the qualities a Guard or Reserve Member can
bring to the table,” Denson said. “When they hire Guardsmen they can see
all the other jobs and technical training that these employees have
received from the National Guard. They are not just infantry Soldiers
but mechanics, clerks, and IT technicians as well. They will show up on
time, work hard and give 100 percent because that is what they are
trained to do.”
“It was fascinating to see what the Soldiers are up to,” said Tim A.
Strebig, a machine shop supervisor. “I really looked forward to it.”
Sasha A. King, who works in UW Stout’s telecommunications and networking
department said, “It was a great day, and really interesting.“
“I learned a lot, and I am very grateful to have the opportunity to come
here and see the Soldiers.”