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Mass. supports Boston Marathon

HOPKINTON, Mass. -- While having more than 900 Soldiers and Airmen serving on active duty at home and abroad, the Massachusetts National Guard continues to play a critical role in the Boston Marathon.

Approximately 400 soldiers from the 51st Troop Command assisted state and local police in protecting public safety along the marathon route from Hopkinton to the border between Boston and Brookline.

Soldiers and Airmen from the 1st Civil Support Team supported public safety operations by monitoring for any chemical, biological or radiological agents during the event. The CST also advised civil agencies in planning for and reacting to any known or suspected weapons of mass destruction.

In addition to public safety support, about 20 Guardmembers participated in the event as runners.

The Air National Guard performed a flyover during the opening ceremonies with four F-15 Eagle jet fighters from the 102nd Fighter Wing, based at Otis Air National Guard Base on Cape Cod.

"Overseas deployments continue, but homeland security remains a primary mission," said Brig. Gen. Oliver J. Mason Jr., the state's adjutant general. "Our Soldiers and Airmen are ready to serve wherever they're needed."