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UTTC security officer goes back to active duty
27 October 2008

BISMARCK (UTN) - By the time you read this, Dustin Krueger will have embarked on another chapter of his very interesting, if young, life. At age 29, Krueger is reentering active duty in the military. And he hopes to be deployed back to Iraq.

      “You build a family unit among your troops. The camaraderie is the best,” he explained before leaving his job as a security officer at United Tribes Technical College in early October. “Some of my buddies have left the military but I expect to be with others I knew when I return.”

ON DUTY: United Tribes security officer Dustin Krueger is headed back to the military for what he hopes will be an active duty assignment in Iraq. United Tribes News photo Dennis J. Neumann.

      Krueger is an enrolled member of the Three Affiliated Tribes. His family is from White Shield, ND, although he grew up on Standing Rock at Fort Yates, ND. He is the son of Faron Krueger and LaVern McLaughlin. He has one brother, Kip, a UTTC graduate; a sister Nikki, Bismarck; and brother-in-law and sister Chris and Kami Montclair.

      Krueger’s military service goes back to 1999, when he joined with the intention of serving in Operation Desert Freedom in Iraq, which he did with an Army unit based in Colorado Springs, CO. Along the way he saw a good bit of the world and acquired a long list of skills, including ballistic meteorology (weather’s affect on artillery performance) and language translation. He quickly learned a Russian dialect to communicate with Special Forces units from Mondovia.

      Over the summer he joined the United Tribes Security Department.

      Asked what he likes about the military he said it would be easier to answer what he doesn’t like about it.

      “It’s a great establishment. It’s a great calling to protect and serve in times of need,” he said. “The benefits and pay are great. It’s one of the best jobs a person like me could have.”

      Krueger said he grew up wanting to be a soldier – ever since he was a youngster playing with GI Joe.

      “I do think that Indians are better suited for the military because of our heritage and our warrior societies. I believe that because we have been brought up with hardships on the reservation, like those in third world countries, that we are better conditioned for the military. We are not shocked at seeing those conditions as they exist in other countries.”

      “And we have the spirit of helping others. It comes from our upbringing. We are brought up in the culture to always help other people. And that makes for a good fit with the helping role the military takes,” he said.

      Krueger said he will miss the atmosphere he’s seen in the two months that he’s been at United Tribes. He described it as a drive to become educated and improve one’s life and family, and the spirit of helping other people.

      By returning to the Army, Krueger intends to make a career of the military, serving for another 13 years. He said he expects that he will return to United Tribes some day.

      He said he plans to stay in touch with the college by keeping in contact with his supervisor, James Red Tomahawk, for whom he has the utmost respect, and with college leaders Russell Swagger and David Gipp.

      “These are people who keep people safe as they get an education. And they are always working to make a difference for people here today and in the future,” he said.

      “Dustin is an outstanding officer,” said Red Tomahawk. “He’s to be commended for serving our campus and protecting our county. He’s an irreplaceable asset to our department and will be truly missed.”


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