There are almost 30 US Army National Guard Engineer Companies across the country. Military Engineers build things and blow things up. One of those units is based here in Battle Creek at Fort Custer. The 14-33rd. A little to the north in the Upper Peninsula is the 14-31st Engineer Company. Both are ranked among the best in the Army. The Army’s unit assessment tool and force structure decision support tool both measure capability and readiness.  The 14-33rd here at Fort Custer is ranked third best out of all the Army Engineer companies. The 14-31st in the UP is right behind at fourth.

The 14-33rd’s Commander, Captain Barry Beranek, credits Fort Custer in part, for providing maybe the best Engineer Company training site in the nation.  The Company also has a rotating assignment agreement with the 507th Engineer Battalion headquarters in Kalamazoo. That allows unit members to get some highly regarded administrative experience along with their regular front line construction and demolition work. The 14-33rd has seen service in Afghanistan and Iraq, along with a deployment to Latvia.

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