News>374th Civil Engineer Squadron leads building renovation for relief forces
Airman Robert Adams cleans a bathroom March 12, 2011, in one of the residential towers at Yokota Air Base, Japan, that will house incoming transient aircrews there to assist with rescue efforts. Airman Adams is with the 374th Communications Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Samuel Morse)
Airman Robert Adams and Senior Airman Brandon Poturica clean a kitchen March 12, 2011, in one of the residential towers at Yokota Air Base, Japan, that will house incoming transient aircrews there to assist with rescue efforts. Airmen Adams and Poturica are with the 374th Communications Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Samuel Morse)
Airman 1st Class Eli Diaz exits a freshly cleaned apartment March 12, 2011, in one of the residential towers at Yokota Air Base, Japan, that will house incoming transient aircrews there to assist with rescue efforts. Airman Diaz is with the 374th Communications Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Samuel Morse)
by Airman John Partlow
374th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
3/12/2011 - YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- The 374th Civil Engineer Squadron, aided by the Red Cross workers and base community volunteers, prepared lodging facilities for inbound disaster relief forces here at Yokota Air Base March 12.
More than 150 Airmen and base residents worked on the previously unoccupied residential building into the evening, cleaning up rooms and setting up essentials for the transient aircraft crews who were scheduled to arrive at Yokota later in the evening.
Yokota is helping to posture personnel, aircraft and equipment on mainland Japan in order to quickly respond to requests for search and rescue assistance.
"It makes me feel good because I've been on the traveling end to go places and do things," said Master Sgt. Michael Kilgore, the 374th Civil Engineer Squadron first sergeant.
Sergeant Kilgore went on to say that the building was being set up so relief forces can focus their efforts on doing their jobs for the people of Japan. It gives them a comfortable place to stay with a warm bed and a roof over their head while they help out.
When the 374th CES requested support from the base population, team Yokota members were more than eager to offer their support to the effort.
"I volunteered because they needed help and it's my duty and obligation as a Security Forces member, on or off duty, to help those in need," said Senior Airman Lucas McLean, a patrolman with the 374th Security Forces Squadron.
The cleanup effort attracted not just Airmen, but it also brought in base dependants, young and old.
"It feels good to volunteer," said Ty Hoopes, a fourth-grade Boy Scout volunteer.
Over the coming days, Yokota Air Base will receive more personnel and aircraft to support search and rescue efforts as requested by the government of Japan.
"Helping out makes me feel proud. It makes me proud to be in the Air Force and proud to be a Security Forces member," said Airman McLean. "My troops and I are ready at any moment to help those in need."
Yokota Air Base is also ready to help sustain the recovery effort and its Airmen will remain ready to support both on and off duty.
3/15/2011 7:17:04 AM ET Haha lol. Good job getting that bathroom clean Amn. Adams. But seriously every little bit helps to get bodies on the ground and help get Japan back on it's feet. Good luck to everyone helping out.
3/14/2011 12:24:22 PM ET Excellent Way to pull together TEAM Thanks for all you are doing.