Famale member pulls handcart full of ppe.

Photo by Staff Sgt. Amber Mullen, 178th Wing Public Affairs

Senior Airman Briana Staples, a material management journeyman assigned to the 123rd Air Control Squadron, moves a pallet of N95 respirator masks Dec. 14, 2020, at the State of Ohio’s Receive, Store and Stage warehouse. Staples supported the mission that collects and distributes personal protective equipment statewide to health care and other frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Guard members complete mission to supply critical PPE during COVID-19 pandemic

Story by Spc. Jessica Silhavy, Ohio National Guard Public Affairs

COLUMBUS, Ohio (07/29/21)

Since mid-September 2020, the Ohio National Guard aided in distributing personal protective equipment to Ohioans in need at the Ohio Department of Health’s Receive, Store and Stage warehouse.

When COVID-19 hit Ohio in March 2020, there was a high demand for personal protective equipment, or PPE, specifically for health care professionals and essential workers in Ohio. The Receive, Store and Stage (RSS) warehouse mission supported this critical need by working with the Ohio Department of Health and various medical facilities throughout Ohio, to help facilitate the distribution of PPE.

On any given day, the warehouse would see up-to 15 semi-truck deliveries of important medical equipment such as gloves, masks and gowns. The supplies were accounted for, inventoried, stored or directly shipped out to locations across the state. About 40 Ohio National Guard members supported the operation, along with approximately 60 employees from the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Expositions Center.

“We never failed to get a truck loaded and out as directed, I can attest 100% of our mission to get PPE out was supported and on time,”

“We never failed to get a truck loaded and out as directed, I can attest 100% of our mission to get PPE out was supported and on time,” said Master Sgt. Benjamin Cully, the 178th Civil Engineer Squadron emergency management flight chief and the noncommissioned officer in charge of the RSS warehouse mission. Cully said they were able to develop solutions on how to handle the storage of the massive amount of PPE at the warehouse.

This mission successfully met the needs of Ohio and its residents during the COVID-19 pandemic and has officially been closed. The military personnel have now completed their active-duty tours or were reassigned to other COVID-19 logistical support missions.

According to Cully, even though most of the assigned personnel were not experienced in warehouse logistics, these Citizen-Soldiers and -Airmen took charge of the operation and effectively answered the call to help Ohioans in need.


Airmen assigned to the 180th Fighter Wing package food bundles May 29, 2020,
at the Seagate Food Bank in Toledo, Ohio. More than 400 Ohio National Guard
members were activated at the time to support COVID-19 relief efforts,
continuing the Ohio National Guard’s long history of supporting humanitarian
efforts throughout Ohio and the nation.