JOHNSTON, Iowa -- The newly appointed leader of the Iowa National Guard, Adjutant General Benjamin Corell, knows how difficult it can be for Iowa families when service members get deployed. He has deployed six times, including trips to Afghanistan, Iraq and Kuwait. And his three sons, all guard members themselves, have also been deployed.
Tuesday, Governor Kim Reynolds announced Major General Corell's promotion in the guard, for which he has served since 1986. Corell, a Strawberry Point native, recognized the stress that deployments can bring to families. "I want to thank my family, especially my wife Beth," he said as he stood before guard members, "She was my high school sweetheart. She has stood by me for 40 years, six deployments and I couldn’t do what I do without you."
Corell said that the military tries to prepare members for the strains of deployments, recognizing how often the United States has been sending Iowans overseas ever since the terrorist attacks in New York City on September 11, 2001. "I can’t tell you what tomorrow’s going to bring. I can’t tell you when this all ends. I can tell you that we will be ready when we are called upon to go into a federal status or when we’re called upon to support the homeland in the state of Iowa and its citizens."
He pointed out that 20,000 Iowans have deployed since the attacks.