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News | May 3, 2018

Meet Your Guard: Sgt. James Hance

Bravo Company, 572nd Brigade Engineer Battalion, 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Mountain)

Name: Sgt. James Hance
Military Specialty: 12B Combat Engineer
Years of Service: 7
Unit: Bravo Company, 572nd Brigade Engineer Battalion, 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Mountain)
Hometown: Burlington, VT
Current Town: Northfield, VT
High School Graduation Year: 2008

Q. Why did you join the Vermont National Guard? 
A. To protect and serve our nation and the state of Vermont. 

Q. What do you do in the Vermont National Guard?
A. I started out as a 12N Heavy equipment operator. I am now currently a 12B20E8, Combat Engineer Explosive Ordnance Clearance Agent. 

Q. What do you do for civilian work?
A. Assistant Grocery manager at the Berlin Corners Shaws. 

Q. What do you think is the greatest benefit of being in the National Guard?
A. Building partnerships and friendships with the community and around the world. Being able to serve in a federal mission along with state missions. Helping locally when disaster strikes. 

Q. How has being a National Guard member benefited you in your local community and job?
A. Serving has caused me to excel rapidly in whatever job field I have been in during my career in the National Guard. Local employers instantly recognize my work ethic and leadership capabilities. 

Q. What is your most memorable military moment?
A. Helping dig out Boston, Mass. With the crazy amount of snow they got during winter a few years ago. 

Q. How long have you lived in Vermont?
A. The better share of 28 years. 

Q. What has surprised you about the Vermont National Guard?
A. The vast amount of career opportunities that there are, in the National Guard itself or partnerships with local employers. 

Q. What is your favorite part about serving in the VT National Guard?
A. Honestly, the people I serve with. I have been exposed to service members all around the country, and those that I serve with here in Vermont are the best, hands down. 

Q. How many push-ups did you get on your last physical fitness test?
A. 74

Q. What made you volunteer for this Senegal Mission?
A. To explore a different country and learn about their culture and make new friendships. 

Q. Is this your first time here going to Senegal?
A. This is my first trip. I am looking forward to trying the local cuisine and learning more about the country. 

Q. What is your mission in Senegal?
A. To build a stronger partnership and build a known distance range for Senegalese Armed Forces.

Q. What do you want to take away from this trip?
A. If nothing else…..awesome memories. 

Q. How do you feel about being able to train with the Senegal Army?
A. I feel like it is an extraordinary opportunity and feel sincerely lucky. 

Q. What are some differences between Senegal and Vermont?
A. Size of the country/state, population, language, religion, customs……basically everything.
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