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NEWS | May 17, 2023

U.S. Army North wraps up annual homeland defense Vibrant Response exercise

By Bethany Huff U.S. Army North

U.S. Army North, U.S. Northern Command’s Joint Force Land Component Command, oversaw approximately 2,500 military and civilian personnel assigned to numerous military organizations across the country during its annual disaster response training exercise, Vibrant Response, April 24 – May 12, 2023.

The Vibrant Response exercise enhances the military’s ability defend the homeland by training and certifying three U.S. Army North subordinate units - Joint Task Force Civil Support, Task Force-76, and Task Force-46 - and their ability to response to a simulated all-hazards incident.

“I believe the greatest risk that our nation faces right now is our inability to change and adapt at a pace required by the strategic environment,” said Gen. Glen VanHerck, North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and United States Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) commander during a recent U.S. Congressional posture hearing. “Homeland defense must be recognized essential to contingency plans at home and for power projection abroad, and it is vital that all military planning account for that reality.”

The three task forces provide command and control to Department of Defense personnel when they are deployed in support of civilian responders to manage chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear incidents.

“The units faced a new exercise design [this year] that challenged the leadership and staff with complex situations through a dynamic and real-life higher command and sustainment enterprise,” said Maj. Gen. William J. Prendergast, Deputy Commanding General-National Guard, Task Force-51, U.S. Army North.

Vibrant Response included participants from the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which the task forces supported.

Joint Task Force Civil Support, Task Force-76 and Task Force-46 are comprised of Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines from the Active, Guard and Reserve components as well as DoD civil service employees and contractors. The units are headquartered in Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Lansing, Michigan, respectively.

“All of the units showed continued and excellent growth throughout the exercise and are ready to respond to help protect lives and end human suffering,” said Prendergast.

For additional information, contact the U.S. Army North (Fifth Army) and JFLCC public affairs office at 210-247-8852 or; for photos and videos, visit: