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    Unexpected kindness

    Unexpected kindness

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Clifford Coy | Spc. Daniel Minor from Mountain Lake, Minn., an interior electrician with the 492nd...... read more read more



    Story by Staff Sgt. Clifford Coy 

    368th Public Affairs Detachment

    SAN JUAN OPICO, El Salvador – The mission for U.S. Army engineer soldiers from the 492nd Engineer Company out of Mankato, Minnesota, is to help the people of El Salvador by using their construction expertise to build a clinic for the those living here during this year’s Beyond the Horizon mission.

    BTH is a humanitarian and civic assistance mission that lasts for several months with service members from the U.S., El Salvador, Brazil, Canada, Colombia and Chile that provides construction and medical assistance to the people of El Salvador.

    Not only are the soldiers of the 492nd providing help with building the clinic, but one of them went above and beyond his mission by bringing coloring books, crayons and other toys that were donated from home to hand out to the children that live in the area.

    “Once I returned home after the first time here, I started talking to some friends about how some of the kids lived and they all thought it would be beneficial if they could do something to donate items to the children down here,” said Staff Sgt. Adam Owings, a construction supervisor with the 492nd.

    With the average household income around $3,580 a year, according to, many areas of El Salvador do not have the resources to support the need for medical care.

    I feel like they need the clinic because local healthcare isn’t always readily available, said Spc. Daniel Minor from Mountain Lake, Minnesota, an interior electrician with the 492nd. “There is obviously some poverty here and some areas might need a little more help than others. So we are here to provide that extra help where it’s needed.”

    U.S. personnel are working hand in hand with the Salvadoran Army engineers to not only build a clinic, but to also build a lasting relationship between our two nations.

    “It’s been good to see a style of life that is not our own and to work with people that I wouldn’t have had the chance to work with back home,” said Minor.

    Owings came to El Salvador in March as part of the advanced party to build living areas for the U.S. service members that would be arriving in the coming weeks. In order to get his message out, he took to social media.

    “I posted that I wanted to get donations for the kids in El Salvador on Facebook and the response I got was a little overwhelming,” said Owings. “I was able to fill two duffel bags and a footlocker full of stuff from family, friends and the American Legion in North Mankato.”

    During Owings’ time at the construction site approximately 75 children got the gifts that were donated.

    “Everyone was a little surprised at first. I don’t think they have really seen that kind of generosity but everybody was extremely receiving and enjoyed getting the gifts.” said Owings “You could tell that they were appreciative.”

    After almost two weeks of building a clinic, interacting with locals and handing out donations, Owing’s had this to say, “It feels better to give than to receive. I think all of the soldiers we had down here felt better about themselves and being able to help others.”



    Date Taken: 05.05.2015
    Date Posted: 05.05.2015 20:12
    Story ID: 162352
    Location: SAN JUAN OPICO, SV 
    Hometown: MANKATO, MN, US
    Hometown: MOUNTAIN LAKE, MN, US

    Web Views: 274
    Downloads: 1