FORT LEE, Va. – The Army Community Service team at Fort Lee is “turning R.E.D.” this month, and they want others across the installation to join them.
“We’re going red each Friday to Remember Everyone Deployed,” elaborated ACS Specialist Frenchi Watts Kemp, a member of the facility’s Soldier and Family Resource Center staff.
She noted that February is already the month celebrating love on Valentine’s Day and the annual observance of a national heart health campaign. Thus, the color red is in abundance, and they decided to embrace it for yet another reason – to honor deployed service members around the world.
“Even though Fort Lee doesn’t have many deploying individuals here locally, the service members, civilians and families who serve and live here have either been deployed or are connected to someone who is currently deployed,” Watts Kemp said. “We want all to know Fort Lee has not forgotten the sacrifice.”
Watts Kemp went on to explain the origins of the remembrance effort. In 2016, a woman named Gloria De Paul founded the nonprofit group RememberEveryoneDeployed.org in honor of her father who served in the Navy and the many military members she worked with over the span of more than 11 years as an educator contracted by the Marines and Air Force. De Paul was known for wearing red every Friday.
Since inception, the nonprofit’s trend has become a community engagement and social media highlight, with individuals wearing red and sharing photos each Friday with the hashtags #RememberEveryoneDeployed and #REDFridays. The tribute continues to spread in popularity with regular participation from California, North Carolina, Oregon and most recently Virginia.
“We encourage our Fort Lee area constituents to join us in wearing red each Friday as we honor and remember these brave individuals who are away from home serving their country,” Watts Kemp said.
Fort Lee R.E.D. Friday participants can submit photos for posting to the Fort Lee Army Community Service Facebook page. Send them by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Those posting photos to other social media sites are asked to include the hashtags: #FortLeeREDFridays and/or #FortLeeACSRemembersEveryoneDeployed.
For additional information, call 804-734-6762.