Red Cross supports 9th Mission Support Command, Walkathon

| April 2, 2015 | 0 Comments
Student and adult walkers show their support for the troops with a big “hooah” at the 29th annual American Red Cross Walkathon on Saturday, March 21, in Susupe, Saipan. U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers with 302nd QM Co., Det. 1, 9th MSC, provided support for the event. by showcasing a military HMVE for more than 2,000 walkers and spectators.

Student and adult walkers show their support for the troops with a big “hooah” at the 29th annual American Red Cross Walkathon on Saturday, March 21, in Susupe, Saipan. U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers with 302nd QM Co., Det. 1, 9th MSC, provided support for the event. by showcasing a military HMVE for more than 2,000 walkers and spectators.

Story and photo by
Staff Sgt. James Kennedy Benjamin
305th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
9th Mission Support Command
PUERTO RICO, Saipan — Since its inception in 1882, the American Red Cross has always had close ties to the U.S. military.

More than a century later, those ties continue to echo through the spirit of the volunteers and donors who support ARC and its mission in the Northern Mariana Islands.

Red Cross’s Northern Mariana Islands Chapter showed its support for the troops, March 21, by choosing vintage olive green as its official shirt color this year during its annual walkathon event.

“This year we chose this color to show our support for the troops who are out there protecting our country,” said John Hirsh, the NMI Chapter executive director. “It is our way of showing our commitment to the military and their families.”

Red Cross’s 10K walking event attracted more than 2,000 participants from public and private schools, as well as local government and private agencies. Every participant who pledged $20 or more received a military green shirt along with other incentives.

9th MSC support
At the request of ARC, Soldiers with the 302nd Quartermaster Company, Detachment 1, 9th MSC, supported the event by showcasing a military Humvee during the “Big Truck Show.” Student and adult walkers had the chance to get behind the driver’s seat and experience a Soldier’s life behind the wheel.

Sgt. Charles Nicholas, a Soldier with the 302nd, was among the Soldiers who provided support for the half-day event.

“A lot of the students seemed excited to see us here,” Nicholas said. “Some people wanted to put on our Army helmet and get in the vehicle. Others just wanted to say thank you.”
Nicholas, like other service members and veterans there that day, was moved by the gesture of the shirt color and people.

“We are happy to be here to support the walkathon,” said Nicholas. “Red Cross has always been there to support the Soldiers and our families. I feel proud today seeing thousands of people wearing the green shirts.”

B4_9thMSC_Walkathon_001_wOne week prior to the walkathon, the NMI fell victim to Tropical Storm Bavi. According to Hirsh, the storm destroyed about 70 homes and left many families to seek refuge at emergency shelters.

The local chapter’s walkathon and Club 200, its signature fundraising event, raise critically needed funds to support ARC’s humanitarian mission locally, nationally and globally.

“Our primary mission at the Red Cross is to provide humanitarian aid to people affected by disasters, which is why this walkathon is very important,” Hirsh said. “Aside from disaster relief, we also support our community by training people in lifesaving skills, such as CPR and delivering emergency communication messages to service members around the world.”

The Red Cross is a global nonprofit organization driven by volunteerism and the generosity of donors.

“Without the students and adult walkers here, our chapter would not be able to operate,” Hirsh said. “Every year we are grateful and humbled by the support our community gives us.”

Tags: , , ,

Category: Community, Community Relations

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *