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YARS Airmen support the community

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Noah J. Tancer
  • 910th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

A Reserve Citizen Airman stands in front of a bumper-to-bumper line of vehicles waiting to be directed forward. Two-by-two they drive past the Airman to be greeted by 12 more 910th Logistics Readiness Squadron troops and an assortment of other volunteers. Like clockwork, boxes of food are packed into truck beds, car trunks and back seats.

On July 7, 2020, the Community Food Warehouse of Mercer County hosted a food drive at Hickory High School in Hermitage, Pennsylvania. Thirteen Airmen assigned to the 910th LRS volunteered their time to support the event: Airman 1st Class Aaron Williamsblack, Senior Airman Branton Olson, Senior Airman Bernice Agyepong, Senior Airman Katherine Verasrojas, Senior Airman John McGinley, Senior Airman Samuel Asongwed, Senior Airman Shandrese Giddings, Senior Airman Jonathan Henry, Tech. Sgt. Brian Gilbert, Tech. Sgt. Dale Payne, Tech. Sgt. Steven Caffee, Master Sgt. Edward Howard and Chief Master Sgt. Shawn White. Some of the Airmen also brought family members to volunteer.

“It was an awesome day," said Tech. Sgt. Brian Gilbert, a logistics planner assigned to the 910th LRS. “It started out very hot. Then it started to rain on us and it just made the day even better. We were all getting soaked, but we loved it, it was a lot of fun.”

From 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., the volunteers ran an assembly line with one person directing vehicles into two lines, each line with one person handing out dairy products, two people handing out produce and others handing out tuna, bread and a brochure for other food drives in case more support was needed. The food drive serviced approximately 238 vehicles.

“The feedback from the person in charge of this warehouse was ecstatic, and the other full-timers were so proud of the group of kids that went down there,” said Gilbert, referencing the young Airmen who volunteered.

At the end of the day, the troops gathered for a photo and spontaneously started singing the Air Force song.

The group is discussing future plans to continue organizing and growing volunteer groups for community support programs. Many Youngstown Air Reserve Station Airmen want to give back to the communities that have given so much to them.