412th Theater Engineer Command supports AmeriCorps event
March 19, 2013
VICKSBURG, Miss. -- Four soldiers from the 412th Theater Engineer Command provided a color guard detail for a nationally recognized organization here on March 8, 2013.
Master Sgts. Lanyard Armstrong, Darryl Cheatham and Mark Hayes, Sgt. 1st Class Jorge Trujillo and Staff Sgt. Cedric Douglas participated in an AmeriCorps induction ceremony held at the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps Southern Region Campus gymnasium.
Nearly 160 AmeriCorps NCCC volunteers from ages 18-26 were inducted for service throughout the 11-state southern region.
Several local persons of note were present, including the Vicksburg chief of police and a representative of the Vicksburg mayor. The keynote speaker was Dr. M. Christopher Brown, president of Alcorn University. Armstrong and Hayes underscored the benefit of engaging with the local community.
"It was rewarding because we were actively involved in the community," Armstrong said, a Chicago native and part of the 412th TEC G5. "Four people came up to me and asked about my uniform and about the Army," said Hayes, born in Wheeling, W. Va. but raised in Martins Ferry, Ohio.
One thing AmeriCorps and the 412th TEC have in common is response to natural disasters.
AmeriCorps personnel help communities during natural disasters. "We do the same thing," Armstrong said. East of the Mississippi River, the 412th TEC G5 manages the Army Reserve engineer assets in coordination with the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
"We work with the FEMA and mainly focus on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi and New Orleans," Armstrong said. Armstrong and Hayes think public service is a good thing.
"I believe in service to our country," Armstrong said, "whether it's joining the military or joining something like AmeriCorps."
"All the kids there were service oriented," Hayes said, "and want to give something to the community."