For the second year in a row the 2nd Engineer Battalion participated in an event that helps bring toys to families in need during the holiday season. The entire battalion participated in a Toy Ruck March from the 2nd Engineer Battalion Headquarters to Army Community Services with ruck sacks full of toys.
The toys the Soldiers delivered were collected from their own personal donations and donations made through Operation HomeFront. Operation HomeFront is sponsored by Dollar Trees nationwide. Dollar Tree stores in Las Cruces collected donations for Army Community Service’s Angel Tree program from Nov. 1 to Dec. 4.
“The Las Cruces Community showed tremendous care and generosity, they heavily supported this event to show the Nation’s appreciation,” said Catherine Michell, Operation HomeFront volunteer and former battalion FRG leader. “Although there was flexibility and discretion in determining distribution of the donated toys collected, it was a no brainer. We decided the best way would be to support the WSMR ACS Angel Tree Program, as this would reach our most junior enlisted families.”
The ACS Angel Tree program provides toys for children within the WSMR community whose families requested financial assistance during the holiday season. This year, there were 162 children who were signed up for the program. Damaris Sullivan-Powe, Angel Tree coordinator, said the donations that were delivered by the Soldiers is enough to be able to provide a toy to every child in the Angel Tree program. Sullivan-Powe said the toys that are leftover help to provide prizes and gifts for future events for children, like Month of the Military Child. Last year was the first year the 2nd Engineer Battalion participated in the Toy Ruck march. Mitchell said the 2nd Engineer Battalion Command Group was on board to get in the Holiday spirit again this year.
“As always I’m humbled. It’s definitely a joyous occasion being able to provide these children with a great Christmas,” Sullivan Powe said.