National Guard Troops Getting Valley Assignments

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WESLACO – Texas National Guard troops arrived at the Rio Grande Valley and are moving to their assignments along the border.

On Tuesday, Texas National Guardsmen were standing at attention.

“Right now, we're currently approximately 250 troopers on the ground,” said a Texas Army National Guard captain.

The captain’s name and some of the soldier's faces were hidden for security concerns and the roles they play near the Rio Grande.

He said soldiers were already in formation to deploy to the U.S.-Mexico border.

"We're expected to go up to 1,000 troopers in increments of around 300 every week,” he explained.

CHANNEL 5 NEWS was able to get inside access inside the Weslaco Texas National Guard Armory.

Early Tuesday afternoon, power shut off at the armory due to heavy rain. But that didn’t stop the soldiers from getting their assignments as they sat in a dark classroom waiting ready to do their job.

"To enhance border security,” said the captain. "What we do is go out there and just find a place along the river and we just sit there and observe the area around and if we see illegal activity coming across, we notify our Border Patrol partners.”

Granjeno resident Maribel Alvarez told us she saw troops when they first came down a few years ago, back when she had many unwanted visitors.

"It's been a long time since they have been passing through, the people. But you never know what's going to happen next,” the homeowner said.

However, the captain explained their duties are limited.

"We're not to go and interdict, detain, apprehend anybody. It's basically being out there and being the eyes and ears for our law enforcement partners,” he said.

Alvarez said she hopes they can provide protection again.

The captain added some National Guardsmen will be armed for personal safety.

Texas Miltary Department sent out a press release over the Texas governor's commitment of the National Guard deployment. You can read it below.


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