SD Soldiers Find Themselves Furloughed
by Breanna Fuss, Reporter
October 01, 2013 9:49 PM
Hundreds of men and women who signed up to fight for the country's freedom have now found themselves without a job. As of Midnight Tuesday those who work for the Air National Guard and Army National Guard of South Dakota are on furloughs.
These planes won't be flying anytime soon, and the people who work on them won't be doing much of that either.
Tech Sgt. Kyle Loudenslager, South Dakota Air National Guard said, "Right when we were starting to get into the swing of things, we had to stop."
Tech Sgt. Loudenslager returned to the United States less than a month ago from a mission in Jordan.
The 24-year-old is a part of the 114th Fighter Wing in the South Dakota Air National Guard. As darkness falls on the base, Loudenslager said when he enlisted 7 years ago, he never thought he would end up coming home and be out of a job.
“When they talked about it last week it was just a 'hey this might happen,' but when we got to work Tuesday everything would be OK. And it didn't happen that way, and it's a bummer," Loudenslager said.
Just a week ago the guardsmen were training for emergencies at Joe Foss Field.
"Everybody in our shop is pretty light hearted so we were joking about it, just to make light of the situation, but every body's obviously in a bad mood just because it’s not something that anybody wanted," Loudenslager said.
Between the South Dakota Air and Army National Guard nearly 550 people are furloughed. Loudenslager said these men and women may not see a paycheck for either.
"From my understanding we might not even get paid for our furloughs. So basically we might just be out of work for the extended period of time we are on this furlough status," Loudenslager said.
As the sunsets on day one of the shutdown, Loudenslager said he hopes lawmakers come to an agreement fast.
"I think everybody is hoping that this lasts no longer than two weeks, maybe even shorter would be great. I think everybody is eager to get back to their jobs," said Loudenslager.
Loudenslager said he is considering looking into part time work to make sure he can make ends meet.