Ill. National Guard to get Memorial Day off

(Source: MGN)
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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WIFR) -- Members of the Illinois National Guard will not be asked to work on Memorial Day.

All 1,109 guardsmen will have Monday, May 25 free from supporting the COVID-19 response, according to Gov. Pritzker in an announcement on Friday afternoon.

All 11 community based testing sites in Illinois will be closed on Monday. They will reopen on Tuesday, May 26, according to the announcement.

“Though many Memorial Day traditions look different this year, I encourage every Illinoisan to take a moment this weekend to honor those who served, those currently deployed, and those who made the ultimate sacrifice for the nation we all cherish,” Gov. Pritzker said. “As the commander-in-chief of the Illinois National Guard, I am deeply humbled by the work these extraordinary individuals have been doing day and night to see Illinois through this pandemic – they’ve more than earned a day of rest.”

These guardsmen are currently staffing community based testing sites, the coronavirus hotline that is embedded with local emergency management agencies, PPE warehousing and more.

"The Illinois National Guard has been hard at work on COVID-19 response since March, with more than 1,000 troops on duty fighting against COVID-19 and more than 1,000 deployed throughout the world protecting our nation,” Brig. Gen. Richard Neely, the Adjutant General of the Illinois National Guard said. “With traffic on Memorial Day expected to be light at the COVID-19 testing sites, I requested and the Governor granted a day of administrative leave for those troops working at the testing sites, giving our Illinois National Guard members a day to reflect on their predecessors who gave all."