NH Army National Guard Medevac Company trains for fall deployment

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During a recent training mission with Fish and Game. Photo/Mark Stevens

CONCORD, NH – In preparation for a  fall deployment to the Middle East, the New Hampshire Army National Guard’s 238th Medevac Company will conduct two weeks of training with its sister detachments from Michigan and Ohio here in Concord.

Beginning Monday, June 10, the public can expect an increase in air traffic in the greater Concord area as well as the Lakes Region. More than 100 Army National Guard aviators, crewmen and support personnel from the three states will integrate resources and training, which will focus on the transport and medical care of injured personnel.

A total of 13 aircraft, all HH-60M Black Hawk helicopters, will be in operation rehearsing day and nighttime medevac scenarios. The HH-60M is the U.S. Army’s newest and most advanced medical evacuation helicopter. It features a more powerful engine (than the previous model) and nose-mounted thermal imaging for search and rescues. An advanced digital avionics suite, which includes a fully coupled autopilot, allows for improved – and safer- maneuverability, especially in degraded weather. It’s medical interior includes a litter system capable of handling up to six patients and an integrated oxygen generation system for onboard patient care.

Since 9/11, the New Hampshire National Guard’s medevac component has been one of the state’s most deployed military assets around the globe, accounting for multiple combat and humanitarian tours in the Middle East, Eastern Europe and Latin America. At home, they play a vital, life-saving role in support of search and rescue missions as well as fighting forest fires.

“They have saved countless lives, whether on the battlefield or in the White Mountains, ” said NH Adjutant Gen. David Mikolaities. “Our aviators and crews are among the most experienced and best-trained pilots and medical personnel in the United States military. When an injured soldier or lost hiker sees that red cross emblazoned on the side of an approaching helicopter, they know they’re going to be OK.”