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    The many faces of Florence recovery

    The many faces of Florence recovery

    Photo By Cpl. Morgan Moore | Soldiers assigned to HHC 236th Brigade Engineer Battalion, in Durham, North Carolina,...... read more read more



    Story by Cpl. Morgan Moore 

    29th Combat Aviation Brigade

    “Rusty Toyota with a blue air freshener,” shouted firefighter Jason Hall.

    Hall, along with other members of the Raleigh Fire Department, distributed meals ready to eat and water to the citizens of Scotland County, North Carolina, at a point of distribution, or POD, in Laurinburg on Sept. 18. Shouting the type of vehicle and characteristics about it ensured that they provided everyone with the right amount of items.

    During this disaster, members of the military and local emergency services have been working together to ensure the safety of their beloved community and its citizens, providing them with the necessary tools to survive.

    Firefighter Cody Heakins, with the North Carolina Emergency Task Force 8 from Raleigh, was one of the workers helping Hall at the POD. Although it is his first deployment, Heakins is excited that he is helping.

    “It means a lot for us to be out here helping people out and giving people what they need,” he said.

    In addition to distributing supplies to those affected by Hurricane Florence and the subsequent flooding, aid workers have prepared to assist with rescue missions and directing traffic away from closed roads.

    Army Spc. Robert E. Shook, assigned to 151st Engineer Company, North Carolina National Guard in Laurinburg, is helping his unit support hurricane relief efforts. Small teams from his unit have been assigned to evacuate high schools because of flooding and to conduct rescue missions. His team has also stood guard duty at blocked roads and provided food and water to those in need.

    This is Shook’s second time dealing with a hurricane, and he feels there is a major difference between the previous hurricane and this one.

    “With Florence, I can tell a lot of people prepared for this,” said Shook.

    Other National Guard units from different cities around the state have also been supporting the relief efforts for the hurricane.

    Sgt. Jason D. Moore, assigned to the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 236th Brigade Engineer Battalion in Durham, is a member of a team of seven soldiers tasked to help with the relief efforts.

    Moore maps out the roads to get supplies to people in need and also drives the lead vehicle for the missions. Because of his previous experience with hurricanes, he is also responsible for monitoring rivers in danger of overflowing.

    During Hurricane Matthew in 2016, Moore’s team was more reactive, he said. For Florence, they’ve been much more proactive.

    Another of the aid workers in Moore’s unit is Sgt. 1st Class Frederick M. Haslett, who has been assisting with the relief efforts for the past few days.

    Haslett is the noncommissioned officer in charge of a team of seven tasked to help local emergency responders transport goods to local shelters and make sure roads are clear. The team has also traveled to several other counties in North Carolina handing out food and helping in any way that they possibly can.

    Though they come from a variety of Army jobs, that doesn’t matter now, Haslett said. The team will remain in the area until it’s no longer needed.

    “This is our opportunity to show the civilians that we are here for them,” he said. “We’re people helping people.”



    Date Taken: 09.18.2018
    Date Posted: 09.21.2018 12:23
    Story ID: 293580
    Location: LAURINBURG, NC, US 

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