Any time a president travels, a lot of coordination takes place between secret service, local law enforcement, and even the armed forces. KX News sat down for an exclusive interview with a Black Hawk Pilot who flew alongside Barack Obama during his 2014 visit to Standing Rock.
Lt. Col. Paul Helton flew with secret service agents, escorting former President Barack Obama three years ago.
Lieutenant Colonel Paul Helton: “We were allowed to fly our UH60’s in support of President Obama when he visited the reservation in the south.”
He said although he didn’t get a chance to speak with Obama, it didn’t take away from the excitement of the day.
Lieutenant Colonel Paul Helton: “You know it’s always an honor that we can support our commander in chief and do whatever the National Guard is capable of to ensure that he has a safe and effective visit to our great state of North Dakota.”
Helton says with 24 years of service under his belt and a presidential visit, it’s something he’s proud to do day after day.
Lieutenant Colonel Paul Helton: I’m fortunate enough to work with the greatest Army aviators in all the country, from mechanics to pilots. We just really have a fantastic group of people who really love their country, love their state, and are proud to serve.”
Although no choppers are used in this presidential visit, the North Dakota National Guard will be providing support services for Marine One and the Secret Service tomorrow at the airport during Trump’s visit.