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    Falcon Brigade Gives Local Animals a New Leash on Life



    Story by Pfc. Lilliana Fraser 

    49th Public Affairs Detachment   

    FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -- The Fayetteville Animal Protection Society (FAPS) did not expect the amount of assistance or support that they would receive, but when Paratroopers of 2nd Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team of the 82nd Airborne Division offered to help out, they were welcomed with open arms.
    The FAPS, which was forced to close during COVID-19, is currently in the process of trying to re-open its doors. However, there were many tasks that were preventing the shelter from opening back up to the public. Fortunately, the Paratroopers volunteered to take on some of the responsibilities.
    “We put down lining around the walls, we put down floors in the cat kennels and we cleaned out the dog kennels...” says Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Kelley, platoon sergeant in the 2nd Battalion, 325th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd BCT Fire Support platoon. “The guys also just helped to re-organize everything to prep for the opening, whenever that may happen.”
    Nevertheless, this is not the first time these Soldiers have lent a helping hand to those in their community. Once a month, the platoon makes it a priority to offer aid to organizations that are in need, whatever the tasks may be. Last month, the Paratroopers assisted their local Habitat for Humanity with building homes for low-income families.
    “We're really big about giving back to the community because everyone sees the Army for being guys who jump out of airplanes, go to war and deploy overseas at a moment's notice, but they don't see the things that we do within the community,” explained Kelley. “The community is what supports us... so we try to do our part.”
    The way they see it, their job is to give back to their community, especially to important organizations like their local animal shelter.
    The FAPS, which is the only licensed, no-kill shelter in Fayetteville, is severely understaffed, so big projects take much longer to be accomplished. However, with the help of the Soldiers, those projects were achieved in a much shorter timeline.
    “Having such a large number of people here to do the big projects all at one time has been extremely helpful,” says Jackie Stickley, executive director of FAPS. “We were able to get kennels moved, which would've taken us months to do, but only took a matter of hours. Landscaping was done, dogs got to be enriched and it's just been awesome.”
    The Fayetteville Animal Protection Society plans on re-opening their doors to the public starting the first week of August.



    Date Taken: 07.16.2021
    Date Posted: 07.21.2021 15:31
    Story ID: 401403
    Location: FORT BRAGG, NC, US 

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