Montana National Guard Takes Employers up in the Sky - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Montana National Guard Takes Employers up in the Sky

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The Montana National Guard gave thanks to their guardsmen employers with the ride of a lifetime.

First it was the Chinook.

Seconds later the Blackhawk took off, and together the Montana National Guard aircraft flew into the Butte sky.

"It's an opportunity for us to bring civilian employers from around the Butte area that have guardsmen working for them now or if they intend to hire military folks, guardsmen into the civilian businesses," said Major Tim Crowe.

On these flights were more than 70 business owners with employees in the National Guard.

Legally, the employers must allow the guardsmen to temporarily leave work for training or even for deployment.

When they return they still have their jobs.

"It's critical that these civilian employers understand what the guardsmen are doing in their occupation with the Montana National Guard for them to understand how important it is, the business that we do," Major Crowe said.

Ken Schultz is a business owner who employs three guardsmen.

All three happen to be his children, who have each deployed to the Middle East multiple times with the guard.

"They advertised it as a ride of a lifetime and sure it is,” said Schultz who owns the Hidden Legend Winery in Victor. “I'm so proud of them, and I think it's a great program. I think every employer would benefit from employing guardsmen."

Each employer took a ride in the air for 30 minutes.

They got a chance to see what their employees are doing while at training or even overseas.

"They are a wonderful group of people,” said Major Crowe. “They're understanding. We take their employee and they sacrifice a lot. We understand that, and we appreciate their support."

The Montana National Guard tries to do a "Bosslift" in the bigger cities in Montana throughout the year.

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