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Coronavirus Update: West Virginia National Guard adapting to fight the virus

By Steven Allen Adams, Parkersburg News and Sentinel

KINGWOOD. W.Va. — The “riggers” of the 2/19th Special Forces Group at Camp Dawson in Preston County have trained to repair and pack parachutes for jumping out of airplanes.

Now, they’re cutting up those parachutes and operating Singer sewing machines to make prototype protective masks to fight their new enemy: the coronavirus.

Sgt. Albert Hardy with the 601st Engineer Support Company out of Buckhannon cuts a piece of Gore-Tex fabric for use in a face mask. (Photo by Steven Allen Adams)

It’s just one of the hundreds of coronavirus support missions taking place across the state by members of the West Virginia National Guard.

Some are full-time guardsmen, some have taken leave from their civilian jobs to serve and some have even come from out-of-state to lend a hand to West Virginia. It’s not a mission for which guardsmen have trained, but they have been trained to adapt. …

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