Kentucky Guard artillery units support community food drive

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Story and photo by: Sgt. Bryan Ploughe, 1st Battalion, 623rd Field Artillery

Col. Rondal Turner presents Sgt. 1st Class Donald Jones with the 2010 Food Drive winning plaque. Two Kentucky Army National Guard units donated more than 1,000 pounds of non-perishable food items to their local non-profit organizations for distribution during the holiday season. Pictured from left to right are Staff Sgt. Brian Garrett, Staff Sgt. Will Sewell, Sgt. 1st Class Donald Jones, Col. Rondal Turner, Sgt. 1st Class Chad Jones, Lt. Col. Jeffery Hughes and Family Assistance Specialist Kari Hutchison. (Photo by Sgt. Bryan Ploughe, 1st Battalion, 623rd Field Artillery UPAHR)

NOTE:  Each Wednesday kentuckyguard.com publishes stories by Kentucky National Guard unit public affairs historian representatives, also known as UPAHRs.  This is an additional duty taken on by a Soldier or Airmen with the intent of telling their unit’s story.  This is one such story ….

GLASCOW, Ky. (May 18, 2011) – Giving to local communities is a long standing tradition for the Kentucky Army National Guard.  Two units from 1st Battalion, 623rd Field Artillery were recognized for their support in a ceremony held recently at the Glasgow Amory.

Each year the Kentucky National Guard, in coordination with Kentucky National Guard Family Programs staff, conducts food drives around the holiday season. A challenge is put out to all units to try to generate as much non-perishable food as they can to donate to local non-profit organizations of their choosing.

Battery A, located in Tompkinsville, captured first place for the most food donated for the Thanksgiving holiday.  Headquarters Battery, located in Glasgow, captured first place for the most food donated for the Christmas holiday. The two units together generated more than 1,000 pounds of food for their local charities.

Sgt. 1st Class Donald Jones received the award for Headquarters Battery.

“We are not the winners here,” said Jones.  “Although we hold the plaque, the families in the community that will be getting this food are the ones that we need to keep in our minds. We have not won until these families don’t require our assistance.”

“These Soldiers are always willing to step up to a challenge,” said Col. Rondal Turner, 138th Brigade Commander.  “Whenever these Soldiers are presented with an opportunity to shine, not only do the approach the opportunity with a winning attitude, they go all out and accomplish the mission with a level of success that would make any commander proud.”

“Our battalion has always been very fortunate in the relationship that we have with our hometowns,” said Lt. Col. Jeffery Hughes, commander for the 1/623rd.  “This is just another way that we can continue to give to the citizens that give so much to us. The holidays are truly a time of year that we should focus on those in need.  Our Soldiers have done a fine job of demonstrating their commitment to their fellow citizens.”

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