54th QM Co.
Tom Ferguson, VFW Post No. 2239 commander, and Art Snider pose with members of the 54th Quartermaster Company, while displaying the official Veterans of Foreign Wars Adopt-a-Unit certificate Monday.

FORT LEE, Va. (April 19, 2012)- Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 2239 officially adopted the 54th Quartermaster Company Monday as part of the national VFW Adopt-a-Unit program.

While the two organizations have worked together in the past, this new agreement allows more opportunities for the units to receive funds for various activities, such as welcome home picnics and company events, said Tom Ferguson, VFW Post No. 2239 commander.

"This partnership leads to a lot of different opportunities for the unit to get funds for company events," he said. "It also opens up the opportunity for the young Soldiers to learn about the VFW and what it has to offer."

First Lt. Malwante Stewart, commander of the 54th QM Co. -- which falls under the 530th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, the 49th QM Group -- said it was a natural fit to put these two organizations together.

"We've already had the connection between the VFW and the company," Stewart said. "The VFW has sponsored us for the last few years any time when we were looking for places to hold our holiday meetings or any other special event -- and they have opened their arms up freely."

Through Adopt-a-Unit, VFW and its Ladies Auxiliary adopt hundreds of military units around the world. Adopt-a-Unit's goal is to develop supportive relationships with units before, during and after deployments to help deliver the vast network of resources VFW has available for the military, according to the VFW website.

Supporting young Soldiers throughout their time at Fort Lee -- not just when they return from a deployment -- is important to the veterans' organization.

"The 54th QM Co. is constantly being deployed and they have one of the toughest jobs in the military," said Ferguson. "We want to be able to provide them not only a place for events, but comradeship and opportunities to have someone to talk to. Often, it's hard to talk to a loved one or friends who aren't in the military about what you see in combat. At the VFW, you can meet others who have experienced combat and understand."

One of Stewart's goals for his company is to give back to the community -- especially to the veterans nearby -- and he said he feels this program will allow his Soldiers to be able to help local veterans.

"It's great for the young Soldiers to actually come in and spend time with veterans because they don't understand the sacrifices these veterans have already endured just to make it possible for us to be here today," he said.

Page last updated Thu April 19th, 2012 at 00:00