5th AR BDE serves Thanksgiving lunch to students, parents
November 26, 2013
ANTHONY, N.M. -- The 1st Battalion, 361st Engineer Regiment, Task Force Redhawk, 5th Armored Brigade and the 2nd Battalion, 363rd Infantry Regiment, Task Force Black Scorpion, 5th Armored Brigade teamed up Monday to serve students and parents from Loma Linda Elementary School a hearty Thanksgiving lunch.
When an email was sent out from the Fort Bliss School Liaison Office asking for volunteers from Fort Bliss to help the school, Redhawk and Black Scorpion decided to step in and help the community.
"Our kids don't really get to see a lot of things or have a lot of different experiences," said James Lawler, principle of Loma Linda Elementary School. "So this year we were just thinking about what we could do a little bit different and get the kids and parents more excited."
During the lunch, Soldiers served food and socially interacted with the students throughout lunch period. Various states of Thanksgiving-themed dress could be found as the students wore anything from Indian headdresses to brightly colored turkey hats. Parents were welcome to come and sit with their children during lunch while the Soldiers entertained and socialized with the students who didn't have their parents there.
"We were received with such warmth and excitement from the students," said Capt. Monique Whyte, executive officer for TF Redhawk. "This event just opened our eyes and made us truly see the need for our Soldiers to work with these schools."
Parents, teachers, and even the school newsletter crew took the opportunity to take photos of students with Soldiers during the event. Many smiles, photos, and conversations later, the Soldiers of Redhawk and Black Scorpion were able to sit down themselves with the cafeteria staff and enjoy the Thanksgiving feast. Ending the event with a warm slice of pumpkin pie, the Soldiers went home happy with their bellies full, and content that they were able to serve a community in need.
Loma Linda Elementary School, which is the only school in southern New Mexico to include pre-kindergarten through 8th grade, educates over 400 students throughout the year. Because the school does not currently have a "Partners in Education" sponsor from Fort Bliss, Texas, the school went through the Fort Bliss School Liaison Office to seek help with the event.