A British Army reservist was on duty with his US National Guard unit in the capital at the inauguration of 46th US President Joe Biden.
Major Keiron Francis, a Royal Signals reservist, is a sales director in the defence industry working on US Department of Defense and United Nations projects.
The British Army say that thanks to a new scheme, the Foreign Military Reserve Exchange Program, Keiron has been able to continue to serve as a reservist whilst living abroad.
The reciprocal arrangement means that American, Australian, and Canadian soldiers can do the same in the UK.
“Keiron, who has previously served on operations in Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq, is attached to the Pennsylvania Army National Guard (PAARNG) with 56 Stryker Brigade Combat Team where he works in the Brigade Headquarters as an signals officer providing IT networks and communications. The US 28th Infantry Division, of which Keiron’s Unit is a part, is the oldest and longest serving Division in the US Army and was the first ashore on Omaha Beach during the D Day landings of 1944 – immortalised in the film, ‘Saving Private Ryan’.”
The PAARNG is the third largest National Guard in the US (behind California and Texas) with around army 13,500 troops, just under half of the whole British Army Reserve.