News>Airmen lend helping hand to enlisted village residents
SHALIMAR, Fla. (AFPN) -- Airman Sam Hughes works with other students to clear a community garden plot at the Bob Hope Village here. Residents of Bob Hope and Theresa villages and Eglin Air Force Base's Thrift Shop benefited from the Airmen's labor as they participated in Make A Difference Day Oct. 22 and 28. The day is an annual event, the most encompassing national day of helping others. Airman Hughes is a Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal student. (U.S. Air Force photo by Lois Walsh)
SHALIMAR, Fla. (AFPN) -- Staff Sgt. Giovanna Vogt paints the parking stop barriers in front of residents' homes at the Theresa Village in Ft. Walton Beach, Fla. Sergeant Vogt is a 33rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron supply assistant. (U.S. Air Force photo by Lois Walsh)
SHALIMAR, Fla. (AFPN) -- First Lt. Don Gray (left) and Senior Airman Paul Waldrep hang curtains in Jackie Robertson's home at the Bob Hope Village here, during Make A Difference Day. Lieutenant Gray is a 46th Maintenance Group quality assurance officer in charge, and Airman Waldrep is a 96th Civil Engineer Squadron firefighter. (U.S. Air Force photo by Lois Walsh)
11/2/2005 - EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (AFPN) -- Airmen here gave up their free time help their neighbors during Make a Difference Day Oct. 22 and 28.
Residents of Bob Hope and Theresa villages and Eglin’s Thrift Shop benefited from these Airmen’s labors.
The annual event is the most encompassing national day of helping others -- a celebration of neighbors helping neighbors. In 2004, three million people cared enough about their communities to volunteer on that day, accomplishing thousands of projects in hundreds of towns.
Staff Sgt. Jeff Henson, 68th Electronic Warfare Squadron’s Intelligence Directorate, said Make A Difference Day is one of the few times he gets to help retirees or their spouses.
“Any time I can help someone who served, or their family, I try,” Sergeant Henson said. “They made a lot of sacrifices; they gave everything to help our country.”
His co-worker, Staff Sgt. Chris Ammerman, agreed.
“It is our responsibility to try to give something back to those who gave so much for us,” Sergeant Ammerman said.
Event coordinator Kitty Randall said this year’s events were over two weekends because of Halloween and community events that conflicted with the national date of the last Saturday in October.
The goal is to find worthwhile projects that benefit the community on and off base. The volunteers moved furniture, hung curtains and painted apartment numbers of curbs.
“I’ve been trying to get to this for eight months,” said Theresa Village maintenance director Jim Savage, of the curb-painting event. “They’ve been a great help and it’s greatly appreciated.”
Senior Airman Paul Waldrep, a firefighter with the 96th Civil Engineer Squadron, arrived at Bob Hope Village after his shift at the fire station. He didn’t mind missing a few hours of sleep because he knows first-hand how difficult it is for residents to get small tasks done.
“I have a grandmother in a nursing home,” Airman Waldrep said. “Things need to be done here; it may not be my grandma, but they’re someone’s grandmother.”