By Spc. Monica K. Smith, CAB Public AffairsMarch 20, 2009
HUNTER ARMY AIRFIELD, Ga. Slowly stepping toward a bright closet, the wall paint gives a Soldier's face a green tint as he studies the closet space. Taking a pencil from behind his ear, he begins sketching his weekend project.
"I'm building shelves in the closets to make more room," said Spc. Jeremy Wallace, member of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade. He looks at his sketch and then continues, "It's going to be a lot of work, but I'm hoping to get it done in a few hours."
Wallace is one of five Soldiers giving back to the community by volunteering with the Living Vine, an organization that works with women in crisis pregnancies.
"It's great having them here," said Rachel McGinnis, house manager for the Living Vine. "We've done a lot, and this house has come a long way, but there's still so much we need to have done. We really appreciate these Army guys coming out to help us."
The house was a donation to the Living Vine. However, after years of neglect there was significant work to be done to the house. Those jobs included small projects like painting and cleaning, but also more intense work such as flooring, plumbing and the recreation of kitchen countertops and shelves.
"It was really encouraging to see them out here," said McGinnis. "We're going to be able to move into the house sooner than we'd be able to do it without their help. It's nice to know we can count on Soldiers to help us, not only abroad but at home too."
Private Charles Bowling, also a member of HHC, 3rd CAB, said he believes in order to make change, a person has to take action.
"Everyone keeps talking about change, like if you say it enough times, it's going to magically happen," he said. "You have to get out there and help. It's one thing to talk about doing something, but it's another to actually do it."
Bowling said serving the community is something Soldiers are compelled to do based on the Soldier's Creed.
"The Soldier's Creed has a portion in it that says 'I serve the people of the United States and live the Army values'," said Bowling. "You don't have to just be out there in the battlefield to start helping. We're like guests here. Sometimes Soldiers get bad reputations, so it's good to show people that we want to help."
Wanting to help is the reason Wallace said he volunteers.
"The reason I'm here is to give something to the community," said Wallace. "Make someone's life much easier or better only if it's just a little bit. It's important to give back to the community to show our support, and also because the community gives so much to us. It's the right thing to do."