HomeNewsArticle Display

Guard’s Quick Response Force Protects Kindred Home

KINDRED, N.D. -- A National Guard quick response force team responded in Kindred this afternoon to protect a home from rising water of the nearby Sheyenne River.

The team of Airmen and Soldiers from the North Dakota National Guard arrived at the farmstead of Harlan Smeby shortly after getting the call for help.

"The Sheriff's Department came out and they were looking at my dike and figured I better do something because the water is just about to go over," Smeby said.

He described that the water was this close to the house during the 2009 flood, but never got any higher. The preparations that the QRF team made today are in anticipation of the estimated two more feet of water that the Sheyenne River may rise due to the release of water from the Baldhill Dam near Valley City, N.D.

"The Guard is doing a really good job, in fact, they were here so fast that they surprised me," Smeby said.

This is the second response for this quick-acting QRF team, which was previously stationed at the Hickson Community Center, east of Kindred.

"We were actually about 10 minutes away from being let go last night and then they decided to keep us on and moved us to Kindred," said Master Sgt. Brian Laney, 119th Wing.

Laney, a military veteran and now veteran of fighting floods with the North Dakota Guard has volunteered for flood duty three years in a row.

"I told them I would go if they were looking for volunteers," Laney added, who is also getting over a nasty case of bronchitis. "If I stop working, I start coughing -- so I don't stop," he said.

The QRF team immediately began unloading semitrailers filled with sandbags, using a forklift and a great deal of hard work.

"Basically we're throwing up a sandbag wall to save this house," explained Airman 1st Class Jake Dipple, of the 119th Wing, as he tossed 20-pound sandbags down a line to build the three-foot dike needed to save the house.

"On Tuesday, we responded to a farm that was getting engulfed with water, but the road washed out so the water started going down," Dipple added.

This is Dibble's first year working flood duty with the National Guard and it has been an experience that he will always remember.

"Everyone in Hickson was so nice to us, and Olivet Lutheran Church has been keeping us fed. I have really enjoyed this experience a lot. It's a great feeling to get out and help the community a little bit," Dipple said.

It will, no doubt, be a memorable day for Harold Smeby, as well. As the retired Korean War Veteran looks on, he hopes that the sandbags will ultimately only be a precaution and the water won't get as high as he dreads. If it does, he's now ready.

USAF Comments Policy
If you wish to comment, use the text box below. AF reserves the right to modify this policy at any time.

This is a moderated forum. That means all comments will be reviewed before posting. In addition, we expect that participants will treat each other, as well as our agency and our employees, with respect. We will not post comments that contain abusive or vulgar language, spam, hate speech, personal attacks, violate EEO policy, are offensive to other or similar content. We will not post comments that are spam, are clearly "off topic", promote services or products, infringe copyright protected material, or contain any links that don't contribute to the discussion. Comments that make unsupported accusations will also not be posted. The AF and the AF alone will make a determination as to which comments will be posted. Any references to commercial entities, products, services, or other non-governmental organizations or individuals that remain on the site are provided solely for the information of individuals using this page. These references are not intended to reflect the opinion of the AF, DoD, the United States, or its officers or employees concerning the significance, priority, or importance to be given the referenced entity, product, service, or organization. Such references are not an official or personal endorsement of any product, person, or service, and may not be quoted or reproduced for the purpose of stating or implying AF endorsement or approval of any product, person, or service.

Any comments that report criminal activity including: suicidal behaviour or sexual assault will be reported to appropriate authorities including OSI. This forum is not:

  • This forum is not to be used to report criminal activity. If you have information for law enforcement, please contact OSI or your local police agency.
  • Do not submit unsolicited proposals, or other business ideas or inquiries to this forum. This site is not to be used for contracting or commercial business.
  • This forum may not be used for the submission of any claim, demand, informal or formal complaint, or any other form of legal and/or administrative notice or process, or for the exhaustion of any legal and/or administrative remedy.

AF does not guarantee or warrant that any information posted by individuals on this forum is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. AF may not be able to verify, does not warrant or guarantee, and assumes no liability for anything posted on this website by any other person. AF does not endorse, support or otherwise promote any private or commercial entity or the information, products or services contained on those websites that may be reached through links on our website.

Members of the media are asked to send questions to the public affairs through their normal channels and to refrain from submitting questions here as comments. Reporter questions will not be posted. We recognize that the Web is a 24/7 medium, and your comments are welcome at any time. However, given the need to manage federal resources, moderating and posting of comments will occur during regular business hours Monday through Friday. Comments submitted after hours or on weekends will be read and posted as early as possible; in most cases, this means the next business day.

For the benefit of robust discussion, we ask that comments remain "on-topic." This means that comments will be posted only as it relates to the topic that is being discussed within the blog post. The views expressed on the site by non-federal commentators do not necessarily reflect the official views of the AF or the Federal Government.

To protect your own privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personally identifiable information, such as name, Social Security number, DoD ID number, OSI Case number, phone numbers or email addresses in the body of your comment. If you do voluntarily include personally identifiable information in your comment, such as your name, that comment may or may not be posted on the page. If your comment is posted, your name will not be redacted or removed. In no circumstances will comments be posted that contain Social Security numbers, DoD ID numbers, OSI case numbers, addresses, email address or phone numbers. The default for the posting of comments is "anonymous", but if you opt not to, any information, including your login name, may be displayed on our site.

Thank you for taking the time to read this comment policy. We encourage your participation in our discussion and look forward to an active exchange of ideas.