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NC National Guard Lt. Colonel talks security ahead of Joe Biden's inauguration

WXII 12 Greensboro-Winston-Salem logo WXII 12 Greensboro-Winston-Salem 1/19/2021
a man standing in front of a building: NC National Guard Lt. Colonel Jim McVeigh is commanding 300 troops in Washington, DC for Inauguration Day. © Provided by WXII 12 Greensboro-Winston-Salem NC National Guard Lt. Colonel Jim McVeigh is commanding 300 troops in Washington, DC for Inauguration Day.

WXII 12 is hearing from the man who's commanding 300 North Carolina National Guard members who have been deployed to Washington, DC for Joe Biden's inauguration.

Lt. Colonel Jim McVeigh with the 105th Engineer Battalion says their mission is to support Metro Police at six stations across the city.

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"All I can tell you is what we're assigned here to do, and that's to safeguard the citizens in this area and work with PD to provide them the best service I can," he says. "Our job here is armed response, and that's what we'll do: provide metro transit PD with their needs... and those that are using the transit system."

Lt. Col. McVeigh says the FBI has screened and vetted all national guard members serving at the U.S. Capitol.

He says this is unlike any time he has ever been to the nation's capital, with empty streets and a lot of checkpoints and security measures in place.

"I don't think anyone really knows what's going to happen after Wednesday, so we're here. We'll continue our mission if that's what's asked," Lt. Col. McVeigh says. "Our goal is to make this a peaceful process, transfer of process... and then hopefully we can go home safely and participate if they would like to."

He tells WXII 12 that the NC National Guard has been training for this type of mission since the Republican National Convention last year.

McVeigh says the mood of the National Guard members is positive. "Morale is high. This is like them being able to come to the game, to show what they can do. They're all motivated, they're taken care of, they're ready to come out her and support the inauguration."

The North Carolina National Guard has supported the past five inaugurations, with this inauguration accounting for its largest deployment.

At least 21,000 National Guard troops from dozens of states will be mobilized in Washington, DC by Inauguration Day.

READ THE FULL STORY:NC National Guard Lt. Colonel talks security ahead of Joe Biden's inauguration

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