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Gov. Bill Lee visits Tennessee National Guard troops deployed to U.S. southern border

“The men and women of the Tennessee National Guard are playing a significant role in quelling the most severe border crisis we’ve seen in 20 years."
Credit: State of Tennessee
Tennessee Adjutant General Jeff Holmes and Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee at the US southern border

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee's governor traveled to the  U.S. Southern Border this weekend to visit the Tennessee National Guard troops stationed there. 

There are currently 300 Tennessee National Guard troops stationed at multiple sites in Texas. They are assisting Customs and Border Protection officials.

Gov Bill Lee and First Lady Maria Lee thanked the troops for their service. The governor and Tennessee Adjutant General Jeff Holmes also received briefings regarding the rising rate of illegal crossings and criminal activities, according to a press release from the governor's office.

“Tennesseans serve on the front lines of the Southern border crisis, and it has rapidly escalated to not just a matter of public safety but a threat to our country’s national security,” said Gov. Lee. “Americans owe these troops a debt of gratitude for their service, and the federal government owes Americans a plan to restore both our border security and our standing as a global power.” 

According to a press release, the governor was told about illegal crossings at the border from people from 56 different countries. He was also briefed on drug seizures and crimes like human trafficking.

“What I saw at the border is unsustainable for our country and should be number one priority for national security,” said Gov. Lee. “Tennessee will always step up and serve, but we need immediate reinforcements, like a finished border wall, to ensure our men and women in uniform have the tools they need to do their job.”  

The troops are members of three separate units: 

•    269th Military Police Company – Routinely augments law enforcement by conducting training and providing a presence along the border  

•    913th Engineer Company – Capabilities lend to myriad road building efforts and border wall projects

•    2-151 Aviation Battalion – Provides an aerial platform to assist Customs and Border Protection with a number of their logistical and operational priorities