MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. --
Marines and sailors with 1st Tank Battalion supported the Reach Out Morongo Basin community service program by performing community service throughout the Morongo Basin Oct. 4, 2013. The Marines and sailors performed tasks such as yard work and construction for elderly and disabled locals.
“These Marines are out here because they wanted to volunteer their time to the community,” said Sgt. Maj. Brian Priester, battalion sergeant major, 1st Tanks. “As soon as we requested some volunteers, the Marines swarmed to be a part of this. It makes me very proud to be in charge of these Marines and see them devote their time towards a program like this one.”
Reach Out Morongo Basin is a program, which matches volunteers with seniors and disabled residents in the Morongo Basin in order to aid them in tasks they need assistance with. Some tasks are seemingly ordinary but they make a difference in the community. Volunteers do things such as visiting the residents, help them shop, helping with personal business, minor home repairs or yard work.
“I am very delighted to see the Marines at my house and helping me,” said Alifonso Tellez, 13-year resident of Twentynine Palms. “I tried to do these things myself but I just couldn’t. I am truly happy and proud to say our military is this helpful.”
1st Tanks’ mission is to support the 1st Marine Division in the form of amphibious or Maritime Preposition Forces and conduct operations utilizing maneuver and armor protected firepower. The battalion was activated on Nov. 1, 1941 at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C. Since then, 1st Tanks has been a part of World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.
“Marines always leave a place better than it was when we got there,” Priester said. “This community has taken such good care of us and this is the least we can do. We are proving that there really aren’t better friends than the United States Marines.”