(Extensions of Remarks - May 01, 2020)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E412]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]



                           HON. CYNTHIA AXNE

                                of iowa

                    in the house of representatives

                          Friday, May 1, 2020

  Mrs. AXNE. Madam Speaker, I rise today to ask the House of 
Representatives to join me, in honor of National Military Appreciation 
Month, in recognizing the nearly one thousand members of Iowa's 
National Guard that are helping our state fight COVID-19 as our Iowans 
of the Week.
  Over 800 soldiers and airmen with Iowa's National Guard have been 
called to state active duty to help combat COVID-19. They're delivering 
personal protective equipment to our Frontline health workers and 
county emergency management facilities. They're helping our food banks 
package and deliver food to Iowans in need. And they're helping our 
state complete COVID-19 testing through the new ``Test Iowa'' program, 
a critical step to charting a pathway to safely reopening Iowa through 
a data-driven understanding of the spread of the virus in Iowa.
  Members of the Guard like Specialist Janet Fonseca and Private First 
Class Cesar Galvan--a husband and wife from Marshalltown--have stepped 
up and helped their fellow Iowans in the face of these unprecedented 
times. Our Iowa National Guard are citizen soldiers--meaning they have 
to balance everyday demands with their responsibilities of service to 
our nation. Even soon-to-be and new parents, like Guardsman Mark 
Williams, are balancing the needs of their families and the demands of 
serving during this pandemic.
  In the past few weeks, members of our National Guard have worked 
early mornings and long days, helping to deliver personal protective 
equipment to over 88 counties in Iowa to keep our health care workers 
and emergency response professionals safe.
  They've also helped to repackage and sort food at our food banks--
ensuring Iowans in need during this pandemic do not go hungry.
  I'm proud to represent Camp Dodge, the headquarters of the Iowa 
National Guard, in Johnston, Iowa. I'm proud of the strong servant 
leadership I've seen in Colonel John Perkins, serving with the Army 
Guard, and Brigadier General Shawn Ford, serving with the Air Guard. 
These brave men and women who are now called to serve are taking time 
away from their regular jobs and their families to help support our 
citizens--and they deserve the thanks of a grateful state.
  Our National Guard members now serving may be known to their 
neighbors only as members of the local church or an employee at a local 
business--their regular lives before this pandemic that gave no 
indication of their commitment to serve. But in times of crisis, we 
know we can count on them--for this is hardly the first time they've 
been called to help.
  Last year, when Iowa was reeling from devastating flooding in the 
southwest part of our state, it was members of our National Guard who 
stepped up to help crippled communities get back on their feet.
  And so, in recognition of National Military Appreciation Month, I'm 
proud to honor the brave and dedicated men and women of the Iowa 
National Guard for their critical help to our emergency response to the 
COVID-19 pandemic.
  I ask everyone to join me in thanking the Iowans serving our country 
both here and around the world as members of the United States Army, 
Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. Their commitment to our 
nation and to protecting our citizens--in the face of enemies both seen 
and unseen--is not forgotten in these unique and challenging times.