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    16th BEB Holds Santa Ruck

    Santa Ruck

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Kelsey Miller | Soldiers donated toys in support of Operation Santa Claus on Main Fort Bliss, Dec 1....... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Kelsey Miller 

    1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division

    Soldiers assigned to 16th Engineer Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team participated in an unusual, but cheerful physical training session Friday. Instead of the typical ruck march, the battalion put a holiday twist on it by encouraging the soldiers to wear holiday gear and fill their sacks with toys instead of the traditional 35 pounds of gear.
    The idea behind the holiday ruck was to collect donated toys for operation Santa Claus on Main Fort Bliss. The toys donated by the soldiers will be given out to other families within the Fort Bliss community who may have deployed spouses, or may not be able to provide toys for their children this year.
    “This was special because we live in a community that supports the military, and giving back to that community is important,” said Maj. Michael E. Fitzgerald, the battalion’s executive officer. “In this case it’s even more important because it’s not just your community, it’s your fellow soldiers.”
    Soldiers from the battalion showed up in various forms of holiday attire from holiday sweaters to ruck sacks covered in Christmas lights. Holiday music from cell phones and small radios filled the air.
    Alongside the formation ran “Santa Clause”, or Command Sgt. Maj. Anthony L. Hunsaker, the battalion’s senior enlisted leader, as he motivated soldiers with holiday remarks and his Santa costume.
    Hunsaker has done events like this in the past with his other units and thought it was a good, fun way to boost morale and show support for the community here, he said of why he organized the event.
    “In some cases there will be kids in our community who get to see everybody else celebrating the holidays and not get that for themselves,” said Fitzgerald. “This allows us to help children get to experience the holiday spirit. Also, some may not get to see their parent this year due to deployment, but they will be getting toys from other soldiers. That’s important.”



    Date Taken: 12.01.2017
    Date Posted: 12.19.2017 12:55
    Story ID: 259445
    Location: FORT BLISS, TX, US 

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    16th BEB Holds Santa Ruck