By CourtesyApril 8, 2014
SAVANNAH, Ga. - As the sun rose above the Savannah skyline on March 27, Sgt. Michael McLaughlin found himself waking up for another day of work, except this day would be different, he was going to help families in need by providing them with the food they would not otherwise have.
McLaughlin, an infantry squad leader, was part of a group of Soldiers from Company E, 703rd Brigade Support Battalion, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, currently attached to 3rd Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 4th IBCT, who volunteered their time to help the Walthourville Fire Department and United Way for the Coastal Empire collect food donations for families in need in the greater Coastal Empire area.
This was not to be a typical day full of numerous tasks in the motor pool. Instead of putting his uniform on and getting his mind right for another rigorous physical training session, McLaughlin finished the last tie on his boots and started helping his wife pack bags full of food.
"When my wife volunteered for the United Way, I volunteered," said McLaughlin. "I pitched the idea up my chain of command and the entire company was motivated to participate."
Chief Tracy McFadden of the Walthourville Fire Department could not thank the 3-15 Inf. Soldiers enough for their participation.
"They are awesome. Not only do they serve our nation but here they are helping out in the community. We can't respect them or thank them enough," said McFadden.
The director of United Way, Jennifer Darsey, shared McFadden's thoughts, "They are the backbone of this operation. With their help we were able to accomplish this with no trouble and I just love to see Soldiers helping out," said Darsey.
Food gathered by the Soldiers at the food drop was distributed to more than 500 families across the Coastal Empire.
Warriors one day and active members of their communities the next, the "Can Do" Soldiers of 3-15 Inf. continue to show their versatility on and off the battlefield.