An officer of one of the nation’s oldest institutions says the role of the National Guard is experiencing a major shift as the nation faces disaster at home… and war abroad. Assistant Adjutant General Larry Kay with The Missouri National Guard says the duties of the Guard have been redefined from when he first began serving in the 1970s. He says the role of the Guard has shifted from a supplemental strategic reserve to an operational militia with 8,000 of Missouri’s 10,500 soldiers serving in combat. He adds though Guard soldiers are only required to serve one mandatory deployment, more soldiers are volunteering for multiple deployments. He points out that deploying a Guard soldier is cheaper than deploying a military soldier… saying you can deploy three Guardsmen for one military trooper.