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    Local Recruiters Deliver Meals to Children During School Closures

    Across the country, the spread of the novel coronavirus has caused schools to close, leaving some children at home without the convenience of daily school meals.

    In an effort to provide meals for children, recruiters assigned to Navy Talent Acquisition Group (NTAG) Mid America, in the Springfield, Illinois area, have been delivering school meals to families who need them.

    One of those recruiters, Sonar Technician (Submarines) 1st Class Cody Philpot, initially planned on doing what he could to help one family. With the help of his wife, Megan, and the Springfield Families Helping Families Facebook group, assisting a single family grew into helping multiple families.

    “The [Facebook] group has opened up a lot of doors for us to be able to help people combat some of the hardships they’re facing during this uncertain time,” said Philpot. “We also received masks for the all the recruiters and their families, a need that was filled in just a few hours.”

    With word spreading throughout the community, Philpot asked his recruiting peers to help children from going hungry. They were more than willing to assist.

    “When a fellow recruiter asks for help, you help,” said Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Kameron Williams. “This is something very important to me and to all of us. So far, I think we’ve delivered approximately 1000 meals in total.”

    Since starting last month, they’ve delivered meals every weekday, once per day. The meals include a breakfast and a lunch, with all of the meals prepared by school district staff members.

    “All the weekday meals we deliver are created at the school and follow nutrition guidelines,” said Philpot. “Breakfast is usually cereal or a pastry with fruit and milk. For lunch, it’s usually a sandwich, vegetables, chips, and milk.”

    Since the schools can only provide lunches Monday through Friday, Philpot and his family took it upon themselves to build weekend meal kits. Local businesses were also able to pitch in and local recruiters provided donations and distributed the meals.

    “For a couple of weekends, we’ve been able to prepare meal kits to be distributed as well,” said Philpot. “These kits included bread donated by a local bakery and ingredients to make either grilled cheese or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Additionally, we include things such as fresh fruit, fruit snacks, chips, oatmeal, snack bars and other snacks.”

    In order to minimize the spread of COVID-19, recruiters have been exercising physical distancing to the full extent possible while delivering the meals.

    “We conduct no-contact deliveries so we’re never within close proximity with the families,” said Philpot. “So as a precautionary measure, we practice physical distancing as best we can, by knocking on the door and stepping far away from the home. We also use hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes in the vehicle between stops since we do knock on doors.”

    With physical distancing measures in place, families still make it a point to thank recruiters for their good deed.

    “After we step away and still within earshot, they like to open the door and say ‘thank you’,” said Philpot.

    “One of the mothers we deliver to stated she works nights and is in college,” said Williams. “So she’s always thankful when she hears the knock on the door. Her kids will even wave at us from the window as we drop off the meals. Just that small gesture of thanks makes it all worth it.”

    NTAG Mid America, part of Navy Recruiting Command (NRC), recruits the next generation of Navy Sailors throughout areas encompassing Missouri, Kansas, central and southern Illinois, and a portion of Kentucky.

    NRC consists of a command headquarters, two Navy Recruiting Regions, 15 Navy Recruiting Districts and 11 Navy Talent Acquisition Groups that serve more than 815 recruiting stations across the world. Their combined goal is to attract the highest quality candidates to assure the ongoing success of America’s Navy.

    For more news from NRC, go to Follow Navy Recruiting on Facebook (, Twitter (@USNRecruiter) and Instagram (@USNRecruiter).



    Date Taken: 04.08.2020
    Date Posted: 04.21.2020 15:00
    Story ID: 368003
    Location: SPRINGFIELD, IL, US 

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