• 100114-F-2362L-090 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2009) U.S. Army Col. Bill Coultrup and Maj. Scott Malone, both from Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines, assist Brig. Gen. Rustico Guerrero with cutting a ribbon during the dedication of the Kagay Elementary School.  Constructed by Navy Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 1 out of Gulfport, Miss., about 30 Sailors here are on an eight-month deployment, working on a variety of humanitarian construction projects. (U.S. Air Force photo by Lt. Col. Jerry Lobb/Released)

    100114-F-2362L-090

    100114-F-2362L-090 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2009) U.S. Army Col. Bill Coultrup and Maj. Scott Malone, both from Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines, assist Brig. Gen. Rustico Guerrero with cutting a ribbon during the dedication of the...

  • 100114-F-2362L-021 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2010) The Philippine flag flies over a newly- constructed school in Barangay (community) Kagay.  The building is one of two classroom buildings turned over during a brief ceremony to local officials by senior officers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines.  The school was built by JSOTF-P Navy Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 1 out of Gulfport, Miss. (U.S. Air Force photo by Lt Col Jerry Lobb/Released)

    100114-F-2362L-021

    100114-F-2362L-021 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2010) The Philippine flag flies over a newly- constructed school in Barangay (community) Kagay. The building is one of two classroom buildings turned over during a brief ceremony to local officials by...

  • 100114-F-2362L-023 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2010) Brig. Gen. Rustico Guerrero, commander of Armed Forces of the Philippines Joint Task Force Comet, Army Maj. Scott Malone, commander of Task Force Sulu and Army Col. William Coultrup, commander of Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines, pass a key to Kagay Barangay Chairman Ganih Nur. The AFP and JSOTF-P partnered for both projects, designed to bring economic prosperity and aid in the educational opportunities for the children of Sulu.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Lt. Col. Jerry Lobb/Released)

    100114-F-2362L-023

    100114-F-2362L-023 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2010) Brig. Gen. Rustico Guerrero, commander of Armed Forces of the Philippines Joint Task Force Comet, Army Maj. Scott Malone, commander of Task Force Sulu and Army Col. William Coultrup, commander of...

  • 100114-F-2362L-045 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2009) Following a school and road dedication ceremony, members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, local officials and the Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines pose with children of Kagay Barangay. More than 250 students will soon attend school in the two newly-constructed buildings.  AFP and JSOTF-P partnered to build the school with Marine Battalion Team-6 providing security.  Local contractors constructed the road and the JSOTF-P Navy Seabees built the school. (U.S. Air Force photo by Lt. Col. Jerry Lobb/Released)

    100114-F-2362L-045

    100114-F-2362L-045 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2009) Following a school and road dedication ceremony, members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, local officials and the Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines pose with children of Kagay...

  • 100114-F-2362L-089 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2009) A local religious leader offers a prayer to open a dedication ceremony for the Kagay Elementary School and the Kagay-Langpas road. The school will provide educational opportunities for up to 250 children in grades 1-6. Armed Forces of the Philippines and Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines partnered for both projects, designed to spur economic prosperity and aid in the educational development for the children in Sulu. (U.S. Air Force photo by Lt. Col. Jerry Lobb/Released)

    100114-F-2362L-089

    100114-F-2362L-089 JOLO, Philippines (Jan. 14, 2009) A local religious leader offers a prayer to open a dedication ceremony for the Kagay Elementary School and the Kagay-Langpas road. The school will provide educational opportunities for up to 250...

SULU, Philippines-Armed Forces of the Philippines Joint Task Force Comet and Joint Special Operations Task Force-Philippines turned over an elementary school and the Kagay-Langpas road to local government officials in a ceremony at Barangay (community) Kagay Jan. 14.

The school and road are just two of many development projects taking place in Sulu through the cooperative efforts of the AFP, local officials and JSOTF-P. The projects are designed to provide economic opportunities for residents and give the children of Sulu better educational facilities.

At the ceremony, Brig. Gen. Rustico Guerrero, commander of JTF Comet and Col. William Coultrup, commander of JSOTF-P and Maj. Scott Malone, commander of Task Force Sulu turned over a key and wrench to Kagay Barangay Chairman Ganih Nur., symbolizing the completion of both projects.

"The people here have already improved their incomes since they now can easily move the fruit they grow to market while it is still fresh and in good condition," said Nur. "As a result they get better prices at the market. The road also opens up possibilities for residents to be employed in Jolo City," he said.

The projects were completed through the combined efforts of the Philippine Marine Corps and the U.S. Armed Forces. U.S. Navy Seabees from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion-One built the school, while AFP Marines from Marine Landing Battalion Team-6 provided security.

"We are partners in peace. We are here to support the children to provide opportunities for education, medical care and a road that can take your goods to market so you can to earn money for your Barangay and improve the lives of your children," said Malone.

The road cost P19 million to complete, stretches five kilometers and was built by local contractors.

The school will accommodate 250 students and was built for P7.2 million. It includes four classrooms, restrooms, a complete septic system, electrical power distribution, lighting, fans and a generator. A contracting company completed the roof of the school.

The completion of the school was especially important, as construction was delayed by a tragic incident in September.

On Sept. 29, two Army Special Forces Soldiers, Sgt. 1st Class Christopher D. Shaw and Staff Sgt. Jack M. Martin, and Pfc. Jerwin J. Estrada of the Philippine Marine Battalion Landing Team-6 were killed when their vehicle ran over an improvised explosive device as they travelled to the school site. The Soldiers were conducting a resupply mission in the vicinity of the school when the incident occurred.

At that point, construction was halted for six weeks while teams regrouped and a security plan was reestablished. Contractors and Navy Seabees then returned to the area, determined to complete the project. Finishing the school demonstrated a resolve that lawless elements could not halt infrastructure development in Jolo.

"I am thankful to JTF Comet and Task Force Sulu for the efforts with the projects being handed over today. On behalf of the people of Kagay, we extend our sincerest thanks and request continued support from the AFP and the Americans," said Nur.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16