DEL RIO, Texas — Texas National Guardsmen encountered approximately 105,000 migrants under Operation Lone Star. The soldiers and airmen also participated in “significant drug and weapons seizures.”
“The work each of our service members is doing is very important,” Texas Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Tracy Norris told Breitbart Texas. “Their presence along the border creates a significant deterrence to criminal activity along our southern border.”
The general’s comments to Breitbart followed a tour of Texas National Guard facilities and checkpoints in the Border Patrol’s Del Rio Sector.
“Whether serving at a security point, constructing a barrier, or providing logistic and administrative support, each of our Soldiers and Airmen is critical to the broader effort to bring safety to our local communities,” General Norris stated.
Breitbart Texas spoke with numerous soldiers and officers of the Texas National Guard during tours in Del Rio and Eagle Pass this week. The guardsmen repeatedly expressed their dedication to the mission.
“Our soldiers are making an impact,” one officer stated. “Even when they are not seeing illegal border crossings, they are having a deterrent effect and are moving the crossers to other locations where Border Patrol agents are present.”
General Norris offered the following:
Because of our service members’ outstanding work:
- Approximately, 105,000 illegal migrants have been apprehended or referred to our partner federal and state law enforcement agencies;
- More than 9,000 individuals, attempting to enter Texas illegally, have been returned to Mexico;
- Significant drug and weapon seizures have occurred, including the lethal drug fentanyl;
- And the ongoing construction of temporary barriers, including 10 miles of temporary barriers, with an additional 60 miles under construction contract, along the border is further deterring criminal activity.
Breitbart observed the progress of nearly two miles of border wall in the Eagle Pass area of operations. This is in addition to the rapid construction of miles of fencing designed to slow or deter migrants from crossing through the private property of landowners along the border.
“The impact of their work is incredible,” the Texas Military Department’s Adjunct General stated. “The latest reports indicate those who may be seeking illegal entry into the United States are now avoiding Texas border cities and redirecting their march toward other locations.”
In addition to apprehending migrants or referring them to other law enforcement agencies, the guardsmen are also saving lives along the border. One example occurred earlier this week when two guardsmen at a security checkpoint near Eagle Pass rescued a family of migrants who were drowning after getting caught in the swift currents of the Rio Grande, Breitbart reported.
“On January 31. 2022, around 5:50 am, a family of nine undocumented migrants, including several small children, attempted to cross the Rio Grande river on foot, near Eagle Pass, Texas,” Norris reported. “The family got caught in the current and began to drown. Upon seeing the family, two Texas National Guardsmen and a partner law enforcement officer immediately responded, risking their own lives, going into the river and successfully saving each person, bringing them ashore safely.”
These rescues occur on a regular basis with at least five other rescues in the past four months — just in Eagle Pass, she noted.
“I am so proud of each of our service members supporting Operation Lone Star,” General Norris concluded. “Regardless of their specific assignment within this mission, each of these Texas service members is making a tremendous impact on the safety and security of our state.”
Bob Price serves as associate editor and senior news contributor for the Breitbart Texas-Border team. He is an original member of the Breitbart Texas team. Price is a regular panelist on Fox 26 Houston’s What’s Your Point? Sunday-morning talk show. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX and Face