• Nancy Larson

Showing up for our military

Updated: Oct 30, 2020

On Saturday, I received a call from Rep. Adam Miller (OH District 17). He is a colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve JAG Corps. He’s just returned from a deployment in Afghanistan. He reached out to me because of my race in the 47th District, which includes the 180th Fighter Wing, Ohio Air National Guard.

While away, he met a person from the 180th and was informed that this gentleman had to close his business because of his deployment and was told, “Just apply for unemployment when you get back to the States.” This is not acceptable to Rep. Miller — or to me. He also spoke about being concerned that Derek Merrin “never attends the meetings” to discuss the possible closing of the base here and it’s now on the chopping block to be shuttered. He said my opponent is “MIA.” Also not acceptable to Rep. Miller - or to me. 

I was a military spouse for 4 years, living in Florida and associated with Eglin Air Force base. I worked in a private practice in Pensacola and had clients who were stationed on that Navy base. Other than my dad serving in WWII, and a boyfriend who got drafted to Vietnam, I knew little about the military way of life and what it entailed. I learned a lot more — about the resilience needed and mastered, as well as the kind of sacrifices the military and their families make in order to contribute to our national defense. 

When I worked in criminal justice, one of the two probation officers I did groups with for that decade was in the Guard. I watched his dedication to his clients and saw his commitment to the Guard, too. When 9/11 happened, he was there to respond. I know that the 180th Fighter Wing was the first in the air going after the plane headed for the Pentagon. They got a commendation for their excellent response. I want them to stay here, on the ready for us and our country now and into the future. 

I will not miss meetings to discuss these matters during my time in office. I will advocate on behalf of my friend, who retired from the probation department and is now serving full-time at the base. I want those jobs to be maintained, and I believe the mission they fulfill is vital. We need to keep this capacity for rapid response here in Northwest Ohio. 

Rep. Adam Miller will be coming to Toledo on Tuesday. We are planning a joint event where he can speak about these concerns to those who live in the 47th District. Stay tuned for details.


Watch video from the event below.