News: ‘The Marines have landed’ at Davis Community Center
Story by Lance Cpl. Dalton Precht
WILMINGTON. N.C. - Marines and sailors with Headquarters Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, took part in cleaning up the Davis Community Assisted Living and Rehabilitation Center after a winter-weather storm left several tree branches and debris across the grounds, Feb. 14, 2014.
The cleanup effort was a Single Marine Program volunteer event to help the local community to get back on its feet after the damaging effects of the winter-weather storm.
Approximately 40 Marines and sailors volunteered to give their time to a generation that came before them.
Volunteers picked up tree branches scattered across the grounds throughout the day, and had the opportunity to talk to veterans, who reside in the community center, about their experiences in the military. This gave Marines and sailors a chance to relate to the veterans, and for one another to see how the military has evolved over the years.
Tom Kerns, a combat engineer who served with the 1340th Combat Engineer Battalion during World War II, said it was nice of the service members to help with the cleanup of the grounds.
The Davis Community Center has approximately 340 beds for its occupants and 500 employees within its own little community, said Julie Rehder, the Marketing and Community Relations Administrator for the center.
“We are so excited to have the Marines and sailors here today to help clean up after the ice storm, and are thankful for volunteering their time and energy,” said Rehder . “It would have been tough on our grounds keepers to clean up all the debris without the help of the service members today.”
Private Jhamal Turner, an administrative specialist with Headquarters Battalion 2nd Marine Division, who works in the division’s administrative section, got the opportunity to chat with a retired service member and said it was a different kind of conversation than you would have with someone who didn’t serve, and there was a mutual respect for one another.
Turner took part in the general clean up of fallen branches, and also took a guided tour of the 54 acre plot the Davis Community sits on.
“Having the opportunity to give back to the people in the community and show them how the Marines can be a helpful asset is a good feeling,” said Turner.
Turner also said he enjoyed his time volunteering at the assisted living center and that he wouldn’t hesitate to do it again under the same circumstances.
“It’s a good feeling to actually get out and help people in need and I would gladly come back again,” said Turner.