132nd Wing hosts Individual Ready Reserve Muster
By Staff Sgt. Michael J. Kelly, 132nd Wing, Iowa Air National Guard
/ Published June 29, 2016
June 29, 2016 -- The 132nd Wing hosted a regional Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) Muster as part of the annual national call-up on June 24 at the Des Moines Airbase, Des Moines, Iowa.
Approximately 117 IRR members consisting of former Air Force Active Duty, National Guard and Reserve servicemembers attended the Muster. They traveled from all over the Midwest region.
According to 2nd Lt. Joseph Appenzeller, the 132nd Force Support Squadron (FSS) director of personnel and officer in-charge of the IRR Muster, this event provides an accurate number of available reservists to the Secretary of the Air Force, Secretary of Defense, and other Department of Defense leadership to ensure records are up-to-date, and to assess their readiness.
If there is a need to call up additional manpower in the event of a catastrophe or war, IRR Muster information can supply accurate numbers of Air Force Individual Ready Reserve members within the Midwest region.
The IRR Airmen received a briefing about their roles in the Ready Reserve and verified their medical and service records.
Additionally, Veterans Affairs and Air Force recruiters provided information about assistance, benefits, and reenlistment information.
"We wanted the Ready Reservists to know what their benefits were, not only for the Veterans Administration, but also if they joined the Guard again," said Master Sgt. Kate Schultz, a human resource specialist with the 132nd FSS and Non-Commissioned Officer in charge of the IRR Muster.
With the 132nd Wing hosting the annual IRR Muster for the first time since the late 1980s, it was a new experience for some.
"I honestly didn't know what to expect," said Mark Murray, a Ready Reserve member, formerly with the 377th Training Squadron in Grand Forks, N.D. "But being in the Ready Reserve, you've got to be ready to go back if you're needed."
Overall, the IRR Muster was able to achieve its goals of making sure IRR members are prepared in the event of an emergency.
"I think the Ready Reserve is highly effective," said Appenzeller. "Our leaders need to constantly know if there is a catastrophe or major event, how many people can be available."
Military members must serve a minimum mandatory term of eight years of combined active and Ready Reserve time before being fully released from service.
IRR Muster screenings are conducted annually at Active Duty Air Force, Air National Guard, and Air Force Reserve installations.