CAMP RIPLEY — Members of the Minnesota Twins Caravan stopped by the Minnesota Army National Guard Aviation Support Facility Jan. 15 to visit with service members and their families in St. Cloud.
The Twins Caravan is an opportunity for fans and team members to share stories, ask questions and meet face-to-face said Lt. Col. Kevin Olson, public affairs officer for the Minnesota National Guard.
Minnesota Twins pitchers’ Brian Duensing and Glen Perkins along with coach Joe Vavra were greeted by facility Commander Lt. Col. Gary Jorgensen as they arrived at the Army Aviation Support Facility No. 2 (AASF) in St. Cloud. The facility’s purpose, as well as that of its personnel, is to provide maintenance and training support to the Minnesota Army National Guard’s Aviation Brigade including flight operations and training.
After the short tour of the facility the Twins were introduced to the staff and their families for a humor-filled meet and greet.
“It’s great to be able to introduce my kids to members of our baseball team,” said 1st Sgt. Frank King, an electronics technician with the AASF.
For the Twins it was a great opportunity to see the UH-60 Blackhawk and the newest version CH-47F Chinook Helicopter. For the soldiers and their families it was an opportunity to shake hands with their sports heroes and ask questions about life as a professional baseball player.
“It’s awesome what you all do,” Duensing said.
After checking out a Medical Evacuation UH-60 Blackhawk and getting a detailed tour by Aviation Captain Sean Spencer, the Twins climbed in the Army’s new variant of the heavy transport helicopter CH-47F Chinook. There they learned about the CH47F from subject matter expert 1st Sgt. Donnie Hance.
Wrapping up the visit with a group photo and autographs the Twins shook hands and wished the soldiers well. Spring training will begin for the Twins Feb 23.
Visit www.minnesota.twins.mlb.com/spring_training for more information.