Fort Bragg’s Army Community Service Volunteer Program presented Iron Mike Awards for Volunteer Service to the following individuals, Tuesday.
Iron Mike Pins
Regina Brake, 3rd Battalion, 321st Field Artillery Regiment, 18th Field Artillery Brigade. Brake made and sent over 300 cookies to a deployed company, helped to organize a Family Day Cookout and also played a valuable part in the Trunk or Treat event.
Kelly Bresko, Child, Youth and School Services, Youth Sports and Fitness. Bresko coached the 12U Fort Bragg Girls Volleyball Team to win runner-up in the Fayetteville/Cumberland County Parks and Recreation tournament, recruited multiple volunteers for the youth program and increased the volleyball teams from three to four.
Jennifer Conley, 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. Conley works with the “No Soldier Dies Alone” program, which sends volunteers to be with dying veterans as they pass away in nursing homes or hospitals. She also filled the role as the “Troop Mom,” bringing food and treats weekly to Soldiers as well as at the completion of every field exercise, which she funded herself.
Elam Beatriz, Bowley Elementary School PTA. Beatriz has served as the translator for the PTA. She translates all documents and social media for students and parents, helps make meals that feed the teachers and staff, helps with the clean-up of the events, helped develop, create and assemble the decorations and stage for the Christmas concert.
Michelle Falco, Bowley Elementary School PTA. Falco organized and oversaw movie nights for Families at the school and, during the Book Fair and Holiday Shop, she put together a free event that provided the students with ice cream, cookies and beverages.
Rachel Gallow, 82nd Airborne Division Artillery, 3rd Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment. Gallow planned the Battalion Christmas Party, Battalion Ball and the Spouse Night Out events. She also revamped the Family Readiness Group fund recordkeeping by updating the books and putting them into a digital format.
Laura Garcia, 2nd Battalion, 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Abn. Div. Garcia serves as the treasurer for the company and directed and conducted a Turkey Bowl fundraiser that raised $300 and an Exchange gift wrapping fundraiser that raised over $500.
Angela Herrman, 3rd Bn., 321st FAR, 18th FA Bde. Herrman wrote the Battalion Family Care Plan Standard Operating Procedure. As a Care Team member, she was called upon to provide aid to Family members during an unfortunate death of a Soldier in the battalion. She also helped organize the Brigade Trunk or Treat and participated in the Christmas Gift Wrapping event.
Stephanie Hicks, 3rd Bn., 321st FAR, 18th FA Bde. Hucks collected and made donations for Secret Santa to the Yule Mart totaling $100 and she published a special edition newsletter with valuable and pertinent information for spouses, military members and military extended Families.
Ralph Hinrichs, United Service Organizations of North Carolina. Hinrichs assisted another volunteer and his Family who was diagnosed with cancer and stayed with him until his death in December. He also fills shifts at the last minute, which allows the USO to keep the center open.
Candice Laufer, 82nd DIVARTY, 3rd Bn, 319th AFAR. Laufer took the lead and planned the Fall Festival, Battalion Ball as well as an ice cream social for the battalion. She also planned and prepared battery and battalion level functions for single Soldiers such as dinners and Family bowling nights.
Janet Lockett, USO of NC. Lockett usually volunteers on early weekend mornings for those hard to fill shifts. She is retired from the Army and pays special attention to the young troops that enter the center by making sure they are fed and feel at home.
Fanown Ruff, USO of NC. Ruff sets up the morning coffee and snacks and cleans until everything sparkles. She brings in treats on the days that she volunteers, makes sandwiches in the kitchen and brings festive balloons to brighten the center.
Troy Shearer, CYSS, Youth Sports and Fitness. Shearer coached a flag football team and helped prepare the fields for the season by moving bleachers and marking fields. He gets to know his players as individuals, is sensitive to their needs, both in sports and their personal lives. He also organized a free football clinic to the Fort Bragg community youth.
Kelsey Willette, 2nd Bn, 501st PIR, 1st BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. Willette makes sure that accounts and records are updated monthly and she helps with set-up and clean-up of various events. She assisted with the Battalion Christmas party and she is always helping to recruit other FRG volunteers.
Nicole Boeshore, USO of NC Boeshore supported several events in addition to working her regular airport shifts. She assisted with Breakfast with Santa, Snowball Express, Operation Toy Drop, the Single Soldier Holiday Lunch, which served 100 Soldiers, and the Warrior Transition Unit Holiday Dinner, which served 100 Soldiers and their Family members. She always works extra shifts on major holidays, including Thanksgiving and Christmas and keeps the center open for stranded travelers or for delays and cancellations.
Nicole Curry, Association of Bragg Spouses. Curry stepped up to take over the planning of the Yule Mart after the prior chairperson suffered a sudden death in the Family. She also coordinated feeding the Soldiers working the Thanksgiving shifts at the gates and she coordinated a battalion-wide breakfast with Santa event and supplied gifts for 135 children. She worked on the Military Police Fall Festival.
Stephanie Faulkner, Bowley Elementary School PTA. As the PTA Treasurer, Faulkner is responsible for an account of over $30,000. She provides monthly audits to the PTA Board and the NC State PTA Association and she helped make the Fall Festival at Bowley the largest fundraiser to date, which raised over $8,000 and is being used to fund many projects to benefit the school. She also serves as a classroom volunteer.
Mary Grzeszak, 2nd Bn, 501st PIR, 1st BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. After many months of planning, Grzeszak put into action the annual Fall Festival. She coordinated for sponsors to donate food for the volunteers working the event, prizes for the festival games and organized the Chili Cook-off and operated the Holiday Shop daily to ensure all students had access to the store and help with purchasing gifts.
Laura Kirk, 5th Sqdn, 73rd Cav. Regt., 3rd BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. Kirk organized several events which included the brigade Trunk-or-Treat, the Haunted House and the Minecraft Maze. She and her husband made and delivered nine Thanksgiving meals to Soldiers on duty during the holiday and spent many hours planning and coordinating the Pancakes with Santa event for the battalion. On Christmas, she delivered meals to six Soldiers who were on staff duty.
Dawn Pearce, Bowley Elementary School PTA. Pearce organized the first ever Glow Dance for the students, which was a free event that offered a DJ, food, and spiffy decorations, with over 400 attendees. She also organized a potluck luncheon in December to recognize and thank the teachers and staff for a successful start of the school year and held a potluck in her home to thank all the PTA volunteers.
Sandra Martinez–De La Pena, 127th Engineer Battalion, 1st BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. and Bowley Elementary School. Martinez–De La Pena was a key contributor in planning the Trunk-or-Treat, Beaver Football Tournament and a unit holiday party. She worked with the battalion Family Readiness Liaison to update the Standing Operating Procedures for the battalion Family Readiness Group program. She is an aide in many of the second grade classes, and more.
Sarah Redding, 2nd Bn, 501st PIR, 1st BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. Redding planned the Apache Company Christmas Party and supplied food for the Families and also planned and coordinated the Christmas gift wrapping event for the company. She established and maintains the FRG Facebook page and increased traffic over 200 percent. She handmade and donated large wreaths and gift cards as door prizes for the Battalion Christmas Party, and more.
Shannon Yannitello, 2nd Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Abn. Div. Yannitello led the Battalion Ball committee that was responsible for planning and decorating the venue. Her planning allowed each guest to receive an ornament with the battalion’s glider patch on it. She also was responsible for the execution of the volunteer recognition ceremony during the Ball, which included a volunteer of the year award for each company. She also coordinated with NCPacks4Patriots to support the JRTC Rotation.
Jerry Boeshore, USO of NC. Boeshore is a team leader who has logged over 3,500 hours volunteering and goes the extra mile for our troops. He volunteered with the Toy Drop, arriving early to serve coffee to more than 1,000 troops from all over the Bragg community. He also assisted with Breakfast with Santa, where he helped set up the event for 360 young military Families and assisted with cleanup afterwards. He volunteered with the Warrior Transition Unit Holiday Dinner and volunteered with the Single Soldier Holiday Luncheon where he served food to 100 Soldiers and assisted with cleanup after the event.