By Senators Hobbs, Pridemore, Berkey, Haugen, Shin, Sheldon, Stevens, Delvin, Hatfield, Keiser, Rockefeller, Kastama, Kilmer, Carrell, McCaslin, Franklin, Parlette, Fairley, Regala, Kline, Fraser, Roach, Eide, Hewitt, Marr, Brandland, Kohl-Welles, Jarrett, Schoesler, Honeyford, Zarelli, Ranker, Brown, Murray, Tom, McDermott, Hargrove, McAuliffe, King, Morton, Swecker, Jacobsen, Becker, Benton, and Holmquist

     WHEREAS, More than eight thousand men and woman of the Washington National Guard continue to serve the country as guardians of American interests at home and abroad; and
     WHEREAS, These recognized leaders in state, regional, and national preparedness, who reside in every legislative district throughout Washington, volunteer their time and personal efforts to serve the needs of the people of Washington state; and
     WHEREAS, The Guard answered the state's call numerous times in response to firefighting and flood support efforts and to protect lives in both civil and natural emergencies and disasters – including the most recent winter storm recovery efforts throughout the state; and
     WHEREAS, The Washington Army and Air National Guard provided critical mission support in both personnel and equipment to Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom in Iraq and Afghanistan, respectively, and Operation Noble Eagle here at home; and
     WHEREAS, The Guard continues to train and prepare for both natural disasters and threats to our national security; and
     WHEREAS, The Washington Military Department and the Washington National Guard have just inaugurated the Washington Youth Academy, a state federal supported program in which Washington joins more than thirty other states in providing high school completion opportunities to at-risk youth, preparing them for a successful and productive life; and
     WHEREAS, The Guard continues to actively participate in the state's counter-drug efforts by providing soldiers, airmen, and specialized equipment to over thirty-five local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies; and
     WHEREAS, The Guard adds value to communities by opening its readiness centers for public use, food banks, and other community and youth activities. The Guard continues to build upon these readiness centers and armories throughout the state to enhance education, add to quality of life, and increase economic vitality;
     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, That the Senate express its thanks and appreciation to the devoted families and dedicated employers of our Washington National Guard soldiers and airmen for their support, without whom the Guard's missions could not be successful; and
     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That the Senate recognize the value and dedication of a strong Washington National Guard to the viability, economy, safety, security, and well-being of this state, both through the outstanding performance of its state emergency and disaster relief mission, and through the continued benefit to local communities by the presence of productively employed, drug-free, well-equipped, and trained Guard units and the readiness centers and armories that house them; and
     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be immediately transmitted by the Secretary of the Senate to The Adjutant General of the Washington National Guard, the Governor of the State of Washington, the Secretaries of the United States Army and Air Force, and the President of the United States.

I, Thomas Hoemann, Secretary of the Senate,
do hereby certify that this is a true and
correct copy of Senate Resolution 8604,
adopted by the Senate
January 26, 2009

Secretary of the Senate