News: Army puts safety first with Stand-Down event
Story by Staff Sgt. Shawn Morris
JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. – The Army Reserve’s 99th Regional Support Command and Army Support Activity-Dix hosted a Safety Stand-Down at Timmermann Conference Center here, Dec. 13.
The purpose of the event was to raise awareness regarding safety issues affecting military families and service members both on- and off-duty.
“We’re suffering a lot of fatalities off-duty rather than on-duty, and we need to get a handle on it,” explained Charles Schenck, safety manager for the 99th RSC.
Keynote speakers at the event were Jacy Good, who nearly lost her life in a car accident on her graduation day from college in May 2008, and Keni Thomas, a country singer and former Army Ranger who earned the Bronze Star for Valor during operations in Mogadishu, Somalia, popularized by the book and movie, “Black Hawk Down.”
“I liked the theme of what Thomas was talking about – training and planning,” Schenck said. “It’s a key part of safety.”
Also speaking at the event were Maj. Gen. William D. Razz Waff, commanding general of the 99th RSC, Dave Henderson, deputy safety director of the U.S. Army Reserve Command, Tom Wight, CEO of Central Jersey Riding Training, and several members of the New Jersey State Police.
While the speakers offered a wide range of information covering many aspects of personal safety to include drunk driving, distracted driving due to cell phones and fatigue, and motorcycle safety, the main thrust of the event was to remind people to “think before you act,” according to Schenck.
“Evaluate the risks in everything you’re doing, whether having a holiday party, or going driving, or participating in sports,” he said. “Just do the right thing.”