New York State Military Forces Hold Christmas Ball At West Point

The New York Guard (State Defense Force)  and the New York Naval Militia (US Navy Reservists & US Marine Corps Reservists) hosted their annual Militia Ball at the West Point Club in New York. This popular event saw around 200 attendees. The evening began with a cocktail hour, followed by the national anthem, the Pledge of Allegiance, and a tribute with Taps. Rear Admiral Michael F. Perry and Brigadier General Peter Riley highlighted the collaboration between the Naval Militia and the New York Guard in missions like Operation Asylum Seeker and Empire Challenge, emphasizing the importance of this partnership

The event was not just a formal gathering but also a night of enjoyment and camaraderie. Staff Sergeant John Santana and Sergeant Nathan Morrison were awarded the Guard Achievement Medal, and attendees enjoyed games, providing a lighter atmosphere. The West Point Club served a range of delicious meals and drinks, creating a memorable evening for service members and their families. The meticulous organization of the event was credited to Lieutenant Colonel Barry Greene and his wife, Jill Greene, who emphasized the significance of such events in providing a relaxed setting for troops to reconnect with each other. The Militia Ball, a blend of formality, recognition, and fun, serves as a valuable break for those in uniform, reminding them and their families of the community and support behind them.

The New York Guard and the New York Naval Militia hosted their annual Militia Ball at the historic West Point Club at West Point – The U.S. Military Academy on Saturday, 9 December 2023.
The event was very well attended with approximately 200 people filling the tables and the dance floor.

Here is an article covering the event:

New York Military Forces Hold Militia Ball at West Point

December 19th, 2023

By 1LT Edward Shevlin

West Point, New York – The New York Guard and the New York Naval Militia held their annual Militia Ball at the historic West Pont Club on Saturday, 9 December 2023. The annual event is always well attended, and this year’s Militia Ball was no exception, as approximately two-hundred people filled the tables and the dance floor during a night of revelry.

The New York Guard is the state’s volunteer defense force organized as an Army battalion. The New York Naval Militia is made up of active reserve members of the United States Navy, United States Marine Corps, and the United States Coast Guard, who have volunteered to serve the State of New York during emergencies.

The evening’s program began with the cocktail hour, after which Master of Ceremonies, Lieutenant Colonel Barry Greene welcomed the guests and asked everyone to rise for the national anthem. Following the playing of the Star Spangled Banner, the group recited the Pledge of Allegiance and Taps was played
for those that are no longer with us.

Formalities completed, Rear Admiral Michael F. Perry, Commander of the New York Naval Militia addressed the group, citing the ongoing successful collaboration between the Naval Militia and the New York Guard, particularly relating to Operation Asylum Seeker and Empire Challenge. “I am pleased and proud to see the Naval Militia serving side by side with the New York Guard on various missions. I
would like to see an expansion of Empire Challenge to include broadened
logistics and perhaps conducting this mission with greater frequency.’

Brigadier General Peter Riley, Commander of the New York Guard, next addressed the room, referencing the escalating terrorist threat and the need for heightened
vigilance among not only among the New York State Military Forces, but also
among the citizenry. Riley then moved on to some general housekeeping, awarding both Staff Sergeant John Santana and Sergeant Nathan Morrison the Guard Achievement Medal for their outstanding service to the people of the State of New York. SGT Nathan Morrison shared his thoughts on the evening’s celebration, “I felt that the Militia Ball was very well done this year. It was a lot of fun playing Simon Says and doing The Limbo. As for being presented with the Guard Achievement Medal by General Riley, I feel honored that he chose to pin it on me at such a
prestigious event.”

As the night progressed, services members and their families dined on the delicious cuisine and refreshing drinks that are the hallmark of the West Point Club. Additionally, the night provided a rare opportunity for the families to mix and mingle as they compared their experiences as military spouses. Entertainment was provided by DJ Spence, who kept the music going all night but for a brief period when he officiated over a game of Simon Says. The old children’s game proved to be quite entertaining as members of the Army National Guard, Air National Guard, New York Guard, New York Naval Militia, and related civilians attempted to follow the orders given by DJ Spence. A good time was had by all.Events such as the Militia Ball require an enormous effort to launch. Months of preparation go into organizing tables of guests, selecting the menu, and coordinating the evening’s events, among other things.

The lion’s share of the credit for the continued success of the Militia Ball must go to
Lieutenant Colonel Barry Greene of the New York Guard, and his wife, Mrs. Jill
Greene. When asked why the Militia Ball is so important to the New York
Military Forces LTC Greene responded, “For the troops, these events are a
chance to unwind, forget about the weight of responsibility and just be
themselves. It’s a night to relax, laugh, and reconnect with their fellow
Soldiers, creating memories that will last a lifetime.”Mrs. Jill Greene added her own perspective, “Both of my grandfathers deployed during WWII, and I grew up admiring pictures of them and other service members in uniform. You know the sacrifices they make and the dangers that they face, the hardships they endure. That is why these events are so important, they’re a reminder of the humanity behind the uniform.”

Source: New York Guard

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