Entries in National Guard (7)


In Flooded Hoboken, NJ, National Guard Rescues Stranded Residents

Emile Wamsteker/Bloomberg via Getty Images(HOBOKEN, N.J.) -- Across the Hudson River from storm-battered New York City, residents in Hoboken, N.J., waded through near waist-high water with their children and their belongings.

"Our basement got completely flooded," said resident Susie Zuckerman. "The water started gushing through the garage door in our building. We're doing the best we can do. We're not going to leave -- there's nowhere to go."

Superstorm Sandy's massive storm surge flooded the streets of Frank Sinatra's birthplace, where the water has receded 18 inches in the last 24 hours. The usually bustling downtown Hoboken area is now dotted with debris and broken storefronts, as the sound of generators churns.

Over 50,500 people live in the two-square-mile city, and many residents said they were told not to expect power for up to 10 days. In the meantime, Hoboken City Hall was set up as a shelter.

The communal area of one apartment building was jammed with its residents all charging phones, making toast and playing with children as Halloween pumpkins lined the room. City councilman David Mello said he was weighing his options about whether to have his family leave.

"I might get my family out of here, but I'm gonna stick around. This is obviously unparalleled," Mello said. "The biggest concern here is we might run out of gas for the generators. We only have more to last 48 hours. If that runs out, we'll have to evacuate."

The National Guard arrived on Tuesday night to help with search and rescue. Army personnel used boats to help get to people trapped in their apartments.

"I've been waiting to leave for three days," said a woman named Rosie as she piled into the back of an Army truck with a smile on her face.

At another apartment building on the corner of First and Harrison, a mother held her baby as they peered out of their third-floor apartment, waiting to be rescued.

Hoboken is also home to many New York City commuters. Samantha Bennet, 26, works for an Internet start-up in the city called Passenger and left Hoboken Wednesday with her husband Steve Bennet after their apartment building flooded, and went to nearby Jersey City to stay with a friend.

"There was about eight feet of water in our basement," Bennet said. "It has receded. We were actually pretty lucky...every basement apartment has at least four to six feet of water."

Bennet said her apartment was on the third floor, so they weren't affected by flooding, but that they didn't have power or hot water. Although the storm surge came up Monday night, she didn't evacuate until Wednesday because only basement and ground floor apartments in Hoboken were ordered to evacuate.

"It was like an exodus, people with backpacks and bags walking out of Hoboken," she said.

Bennet said the standing water is starting to smell like oil from submerged cars on the streets, and sewage because the sewer system was backed up.

"People were using half of fan covers to clean out the gutters so the water would go into the sewer," she said. "They were also using rakes, but they kept breaking ... and as soon as they got the leaves out, more would come back in."

In the wake of the widespread damage in New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie Wednesday issued an executive order to postpone all Halloween celebrations in his state until Monday. For those residents living on the New Jersey coastline, Christie described the damage as "unfathomable" and "unthinkable."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Oregon Army National Guard Searches for Teen Hikers

Pixland/Thinkstock(MOLALLA, Ore.) -- The Oregon Army National Guard is helping Clackamas County rescuers in their search to find two West Linn teenagers who went missing on Saturday while on a hike in southeast Molalla, Ore.

Jackson Chandler, 17, and 16-year-old Bradley Nelson, went on a day hike in the Table Rock Wilderness area Saturday, but when they did not return, their parents called Clackamas County Search and Rescue which set out to find them.

“We have a break in the rain now and the Oregon Army National Guard are flying out a helicopter hoping to locate them from the air,” said spokesman Deputy Nate Thompson. “We already deployed 50 searchers in the area, trying to locate them.”

Chandler and Nelson both go to West Linn High School. They are active Eagle Scouts and are experienced and trained hikers. But constant rain, rough terrain and the possibility that they’re stranded in the middle of the wilderness have been causes for worry.

"If they have the right amount of equipment and training, it should keep them safe for a period of time. But we don’t know where they are now. … They are very deep in the wilderness and coming in contact with someone else directly is difficult,” said Thompson. “They are experienced hikers, and it was very unlike them not to return from their hikes. This is why their families reported them missing,” he said.

Chandler and Nelson did not contact anyone for help once they set out on the hike. “The last time anyone heard from them are their parents before they took off for their hike. They didn’t text or call,” said Thompson.

West Linn High School, where Chandler is a senior and Nelson a junior, is preparing an administrative meeting to update school staff and students on the status of the rescue efforts.

“We have news that many of Jackson and Bradley’s friends are gathering out there at the rescue scene with their families to show support,” Lou Bailey, principal of West Linn High, told ABC News.

“Like everyone else involved in the search, we are in limbo waiting to hear any updates from the crews out there,” said Bailey. “The school cannot help out in the rescue because the normal public is not allowed out there. The area that Jackson and Bradley are at is very treacherous,” he said.

Search crews made some progress in their pursuit after they found the hikers’ truck on Sunday afternoon. “It was locked and the boys were not inside,” Thompson said.

The parents of Chandler and Nelson were not available for comment when contacted by ABC News.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Army Staff Sgt. Charged with Heading International Gun Trafficking Ring

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A National Guardsman and two Chinese nationals have been charged with running an international gun trafficking ring.  

Joe Debose, an Army Staff Sgt. from North Carolina, has been charged with the illegal dealing of pistols, rifles and military-style assault weapons.

Court records say he supplied two Chinese nationals based in New York with guns and prosecutors say the men "ran a pipeline of illegal firearms from the U.S. to China" for nearly two years, but were caught when police in Shanghai intercepted a package containing several firearms hidden inside stereo speakers.

Court records say the serial numbers had been defaced but were eventually traced to Debose.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Were National Guard Members Targeted in Nevada IHOP Shooting?

ABC News(CARSON CITY, Nev.) -- Investigators looking into the shooting rampage at a Carson City, Nevada IHOP restaurant Tuesday that left five dead, including the shooter, and seven wounded are trying to determine whether the man targeted a group of National Guard personnel in the restaurant, police said.

Of the 12 people shot in the rampage, five were National Guard members who were sitting together, all in uniform, in the back of the restaurant.  Three of the service members died, police said.

Because of where the Guard members were sitting and the fact they were in uniform, investigators say it appears the shooter -- Eduardo Sencion, 33, a Carson City resident who worked in nearby Tahoe and had no criminal history -- could have targeted them, Carson City Sheriff Kenny Furlong said Tuesday evening.

"Information suggests at this point in time that the National Guard members were sitting all the way into the restaurant along the southeast side and that Sencion entered through the front doors and traveled all the way through the restaurant to the back area," Furlong said.

"Obviously when five out of 11 of the victims are uniformed National Guard members, that's taking a priority interest in our agency," he said.

Investigators are still trying to determine what motive there might have been for the shooting rampage, the sheriff said.

"There has been some suggestion by his family members that there is some mental health issues that we are going to have to look into," Furlong said.

Sencion allegedly walked into the restaurant shortly before 9 a.m. brandishing an AK-47 and started shooting, then ended it by shooting himself in the head, police said.  He was taken to a hospital where he died three hours later.

Carson City Chief Deputy Jack Freer said the people wounded at the IHOP were taken to Renown Regional Medical Center in Reno and a hospital in Carson City.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


IHOP Shooting Rampage: Guard Members Among Dead

ABC News(CARSON CITY, Nev.) -- A gunman opened fire at a Carson City, Nev., IHOP restaurant, killing three people -- including two National Guard members -- and wounding nine others before he ended the carnage by shooting himself, police said.

The gunman, whom police have identified as Eduardo Sencion, shot himself in the head with an automatic rifle at the restaurant. He was taken to a hospital where he died three hours later.

At least five of the people the Sencion wounded were members of the National Guard, a spokesman for the Nevada National Guard said. Two of those members died.

Carson City Chief Deputy Jack Freer said that the nine people wounded at the IHOP were taken to Renown Regional Medical Center in Reno and a hospital in Carson City. He said the condition of those nine people are unknown.

Sencion, a 33-year-old Mexican-born U.S. citizen with no criminal history, arrived at the IHOP in a blue minivan just before 9 a.m. and was seen running into the restaurant, police said.

Preliminary information was that Sencion was an ex-employee of the pancake house, but police now say that they can't confirm that about the Carson City resident.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


National Guard to Remain at Southwest Border until September

Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The 1,200 National Guard troops serving in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas will stay through Sept. 30; the deployment was to end at the end of June.
Department of Homeland Security press secretary Matthew Chandler Friday issued a statement about the extension saying that the National Guardsmen will continue to be responsible for providing law enforcement support in countering the illegal smuggling of people, drugs and weapons.

In addition to the extension, DHS will implement new technologies and hire more personnel to beef up the current border security.  

The National Guard, at the border since last summer, have already assisted the U.S. Customs and Border Protection in seizing more than 14,000 pounds of drugs and the discovery and apprehension of over 7,000 illegal border-crossers, according to Chandler's statement Friday.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Emergency Responders Prepared for Worst as Storm Hits

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(CHICAGO) -- As cities across the United States brace for the worst, emergency departments race to prepare for severe winter weather rolling across the country.

Chicago is among those cities that have begun preparations for the storm. Dr. Christian Theodosis at the University of Chicago Hospital said his institution has been making preparations including “discharging patients early from the hospital” and “canceling cases that are elective.”  Staff there are setting up beds in case they are unable to leave once the storm picks up.

Dr. Rahul Khare, an emergency medicine physician at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, said he expects vulnerable populations such as the elderly and the homeless to increase significantly. “In the last two days we’ve had a huge surge in the emergency department ... where we usually see about 250 patients we hit over 300 and that especially for the day of the week we really were kind of surprised ... a lot of them were saying 'I have an appointment later this week but I am worried I won’t be able to get to my doctor,'" said Khare.
In Dallas, where the storm has already hit, Chair of Emergency Medicine at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Dr. Paul Pepe described the local conditions as the “worst case scenario,” and noted an overnight rain that froze to ice when the cold swept through at dawn. “Everything is completely frozen ... I’m looking at a car wreck right now," Pepe told ABC.

The National Guard has also dispatched large numbers in preparation for the storm. According to new figures, more than 1,200 citizen soldiers and airmen have been called out in five states including Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri and Texas. The states of Kansas, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Indiana have put the National Guard on alert but have not yet dispatched additional units.

FEMA has said they are prepared to aid emergency responders with emergency commodities including more than 5 million liters of water, 3 millions meals, 500,000 blankets, 110,000 cots and more than 500 power generators.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio