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Staff Sergeant Nygren to be keynote speaker at WDC

National Guard Staff Sergeant Matthew Nygren will be the keynote speaker for Wadena-Deer Creek School's annual Veteran's Day program at 9 a.m., Friday, Nov. 11 in the WDC Elementary Gymnasium. Veterans, their families and the public are invited to attend.

A native of Pillager and a graduate of Staples-Motley High School, Nygren spent a one-year tour of duty in Iraq. After returning from his deployment, Nygren has been attending military and civilian higher education at M State-Wadena and at military posts across the nation.

During Nygren's period of service, the unit has been called to State Active Duty four times serving the citizens of Minnesota locally, including assisting with security during the June 17, 2010 tornado relief efforts.

Nygren is currently working as a full-time support staff member at the Wadena Armory planning and coordinating training resources and keeping the unit members ready to deploy if needed locally or for the National Defense.

WDC's Veteran's Day program will include the Presentation of Colors, student essay recognition, and patriotic music performed by K-12 students. WDC Superintendent Virginia Dahlstrom will serve as master of ceremonies.

Born in Little Falls and raised south of Pillager, Nygren grew up exploring the woods and learning to hunt, fish, trap, and farm like most young kids in central Minnesota. During school, he participated in cross country, basketball and golf at Staples-Motley Schools.

In his junior year of high school, he joined the Minnesota National Guard as a M1 Abrams Tank Crewman. After graduating from high school in 2003, he attended the Armor School at Fort Knox, Kentucky for four months of basic training and armor crewman training.

Shortly after returning from Fort Knox, the National Guard Unit based here in Wadena was notified for mobilization. Nygren spent a one-year tour in North Central Iraq. After returning from the deployment, Nygren has been attending Military and Civilian higher education locally at M State Wadena and at military posts across the nation.