ST. LOUIS - More than 600 Missouri National Guard members will be sent to help support Louisiana's efforts to recover from damage left if Hurricane Gustav hits land as hard as predicted, Gov. Matt Blunt said.
Blunt said Sunday that he was mobilizing 120 Missouri National Guard troops. Those troops will join more than 500 Guard members already en route to Louisiana, he said.
The Guard called up Sunday includes 50 members of the 1221st Transportation Company, located in Dexter, Portageville and Sikeston and 70 members from Company A, 311th Brigade Support Battalion, located in Nevada and Lamar.
They'll join the more than 500 who left for Louisiana earlier in the weekend, including a task force of military police from across the state, led by the 205th Military Police Battalion, Poplar Bluff; an aviation maintenance team from Springfield; and the 7th Civil Support Team, located at Fort Leonard Wood.
The soldiers will remain on duty until released by the governor of Louisiana.
Missouri is also preparing to shelter about 5,000 evacuees if needed at shelters in St. Louis, St. Joseph, Cape Girardeau, Kansas City, Jefferson City, Columbia, Hannibal and Springfield.