Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist toured the 118th National Guard Unit at Nashville’s Berry Field (today/yesterday).
Last year when the Base Realignment Commission recommended moving the unit’s C-130 cargo planes, Frist remained relatively silent – even as Governor Phil Bredesen filed suit to stop the move.
(Today/yesterday), Frist assured members of the 118th that he took steps to keep the flight wing at Berry Field by “speaking to people at the highest levels” about the unit.
Frist says he saw the importance of the National Guard first hand with the relief effort after Hurricane Katrina.
“From the physician’s standpoint, being at that airport with thousands of people coming through to see the aero-medical unit right there on the front line taking care of people who do feel vulnerable…really hit me how important it is to have our Guard in response to our protection here at home.”
Frist says he wants to insure the 118th receives another flight mission when the C-130s leave in 2011. National Guard personnel say the new C-17 cargo jet is a possible addition.