News>819 RHS' 'Dirt Boys,' LRS partner in housing project
(From left) Airmen 1st Class Juan Rigionimolina, and Dalton Mays, both 819th RED HORSE Squadron members, prepare to carefully pour gravel over a pipe during a Habitat for Humanity housing project. Organized by the Big Sky Top 3 Association, the all-day project had a crew of 15 to 20 Airmen from the 341st Logistics Readiness Squadron and the 819th RHS shoveling gravel, digging, and installing a French drain and a pipe to prevent water from seeping through the foundation. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Katrina Heikkinen)
(From left) Staff Sgt. Casey Anderson, 819th RED HORSE Squadron airfields construction team member, and Airmen 1st Class LaMicah Moreland and Shanea Bracy, 341st Logistics Readiness Squadron material control apprentices, work together on shoveling gravel into a wheel barrel during a Habitat for Humanity housing project in Great Falls on Sept. 18. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Katrina Heikkinen)
by Airman 1st Class Katrina Heikkinen
341st Missile Wing Public Affairs
9/20/2012 - MALMSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, Mont. -- The Big Sky Top 3 Association collaborated with the 819th RED HORSE Squadron and the 341st Logistics Readiness Squadron to spearhead a Habitat for Humanity housing project in Great Falls on Sept. 18.
Founded in 1976 by Millard and Linda Fuller, Habitat for Humanity is a housing organization and a world leader in addressing the issues of poverty housing. According to Habitat for Humanity's website, the non-profit organization recruits volunteers to provide the labor in building affordable houses for those in need.
"We [Habitat for Humanity] are blessed and fortunate yet again," said Mike Leffler, Great Falls Habitat for Humanity construction manager. "We have men and women from Malmstrom who volunteered to help us build homes for the working poor. They bring skill, dedicated work and a great attitude to our projects, and honestly, without Malmstrom's help, we would be two houses behind. It just goes to show what an asset Malmstrom Air Force Base is to our community."
The project was organized by Master Sgt. Brandy Wess, 341st Missile Wing command chief assistant, and Master Sgt. Catherine O'Mara, 341st LRS quality assurance superintendent, both members of the Top 3 Association. Their goal was to achieve a general objective written in their constitution - promote base and community relations. And that's just what they did.
"The Big Sky Top 3 Association is an organization at Malmstrom Air Force Base that involves the top three enlisted ranks and our goal was to get more involved with the community because we're already very involved in base activities," Wess said. "So far, we've participated in Harvest Thunder and Adopt a Highway and now we're involved in Habitat for Humanity. We want people to get involved with the Big Sky Top 3 Association not for their own betterment, but for the betterment of the base and the community of Great Falls."
The all-day project had a crew of 15 to 20 Airmen shoveling gravel, digging, and installing a French drain and a pipe to prevent water from seeping through the foundation.
On Sept. 29, a crew will go out again to assist with framing the interior and exterior walls.
Airman 1st Class Shenae Bracy, 341st LRS member and a project volunteer, said that it felt good to spend her free time giving back to the community of Great Falls.
"These [volunteers] come out selflessly and work all the time and because of them we have been the beneficiary of more than 1,500 man hours," Leffler said. "It's phenomenal. We rely on volunteers and donations and that's how we accomplish our mission. Through the generosity of the RED HORSE Squadron and the Logistics Readiness Squadron we are able to accomplish that mission and we just really enjoy working with these fine men and women. They make us proud of the people who serve our country in the armed forces."