JEFFERSON BARRACKS AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Mo. – Air Force Gen. Joseph L. Lengyel, chief of the National Guard Bureau and a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, paid a visit to Jefferson Barracks Air National Guard Base, near St. Louis, April 12.
Lengyel was provided a walking tour and viewed some of artifacts located on the installation, including a historic, 19th century sundial. Military operations on Jefferson Barracks stretch back to 1826, making it the oldest operational military installation west of the Mississippi River. Numerous military leaders, including then-future U.S. presidents Zachary Taylor, Ulysses S. Grant and Dwight D. Eisenhower, trained on the grounds here during their Army careers.
“This installation has a lot of history we’re proud of, but we also remain laser-focused on being ready for today’s missions and preparing for the future,” said Col. Ken Eaves, 131st Bomb Wing commander. “We were excited to have Gen. Lengyel visit Jefferson Barracks to see our citizen-airmen and the missions we have here in St. Louis. Our airmen are committed to being ready whenever called, whether it’s by the governor to support of communities here at home or the president to fight our nation’s wars overseas.”
Under the authority of the 131st Bomb Wing, headquartered at Whiteman Air Force Base, military operations on Jefferson Barracks includes the 157th Air Operations Group and half of the wing’s 131st Mission Support Group. Additionally, Jefferson Barracks is home to the Missouri Army National Guard assets, including the 35th Military Police Brigade.
“We have incredible support from our civilian neighbors, including the stand-up of new community initiatives with civic leaders who want to be involved with our airmen and missions,” Eaves said. “I’m excited about the opportunities in store for J.B. and the 2,000 airmen and soldiers stationed here.”