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394th CSSB Soldiers host Children's Day for Iraqi orphans
By Sgt. Coltin Heller, 109th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment, U.S. Division-North Public Affairs
Dec 27, 2010 - 6:42:25 PM
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Blackanthem Military News

Blackanthem Military News
An Iraqi child from an orphanage in Tikrit receives a pair of shoes from Staff Sgt. Anthony Hollanbach, a mechanic assigned to 220th Transportation Company, 394th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 103rd Expeditionary Support Command, during a Children's Day at the Morale, Welfare Recreation-North Center, Contingency Operating Base Speicher, Dec. 17. Hollanbach, who hails from Greeneville, N.H., volunteered to help with the Children's Day, handing out shoes and playing games with the children. Soldiers distributed shoes, collected and donated from "Let Them Walk in Our Shoes," a charitable organization led by local citizens from Palmerton Pa. and surrounding communities to be given to children in northern Iraq. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Coltin Heller, 109th MPAD, USD-N PAO)
CONTINGENCY OPERATING BASE SPEICHER, Iraq, - Laughter echoed amidst table games and crafts as children from an Iraqi orphanage in Tikrit attended a special day for the Soldiers and orphans hosted by U.S. Division-North at Contingency Operating Base Speicher, Dec. 17.
   
U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers assigned to the 220th Transportation Company, 394th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 103rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command, from Freemont, Neb., also handed out shoes donated by "Let Them Walk in Our Shoes" to the Iraqi children.

The charitable organization, from Palmerton, Pa. and surrounding communities collected approximately 6,300 pairs of shoes, donating and shipping 3,500 pairs of footwear to the 4th Infantry Division to be distributed to local Iraqi communities during their deployment in support of Operation New Dawn.
   
Sgt. Glenn Shannon, automated logistics noncommissioned officer, assigned to 220th Transportation Company, 394th CSSB, 103rd ESC, said he coordinated with Iraqi civilians who run the orphanage to hold the Children's Day at COB Speicher's Morale, Welfare and Recreation Center-North, where the Iraqi children enjoyed pizza, made crafts and played games donated by the Families of 394th CSSB Soldiers.

"We wanted the kids to have the things they needed, and we wanted to see them smile," he said.
   
Shannon, a native of Bellevue, Neb., said he looks forward to holding another Children's day with the Iraqi children early next year, especially during the warmer weather when they can play outside.
   
Soldiers greeted 28 children with cheers as they entered the MWR center, joining the Iraqi youth as they drew with crayons and coloring books and played board games, ping pong and air hockey.
       
Staff Sgt. Anthony Hollanbach, a native of Greeneville, N.H., and mechanic with 394th CSSB, handed out boots and shoes to the orphans who traded, mixed and matched footwear with one another.
   
"You could just see their faces light up at the sight of the shoes," said Hollanbach, who helped the children try on their new shoes. "The look on their faces makes it all worth it."
   
Staff Sgt. Travis Hill, the logistics noncommissioned officer in charge, 220th Transportation Company, 394th CSSB, spent time passing a soccer ball back and forth with the children wearing their new shoes.
   
"It's good to see them smile, said Hill, who calls Freemont, Neb. home. "It's not every day that we can help the kids in Iraq."
   
The children also took home plastic hats, balloons and other toys and party favors provided by the Families of the 394th CSSB Soldiers.

Sgt. Jeremy Stover, an automated logistics NCO from Kearny, Neb., said he saw a side of his Soldiers not often seen during the day to day routine of a deployment.

"This really helped the morale of the Soldiers as well as those of the children," said Stover, who helped plan the event.

The event was the first time in three years a Children's Day has been held at COB Speicher, he explained.

ADDITIONAL PHOTO:

 
Staff Sgt. Travis Hill, who hails from Freemont, N.H. and the logistics noncommissioned officer in charge, 220th Transportation Company, 394th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 103rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command, helps an Iraqi child try on a new pair of shoes during a Children's Day held at the Morale, Welfare and Recreation Center-North, Contingency Operating Base Speicher, Dec. 17. Soldiers handed out the shoes, collected and donated from "Let Them Walk in Our Shoes," a charitable organization led by local citizens from Palmerton, Pa. and surrounding communities. The organization donated approximately 3,500 pairs of shoes and shipped the footwear to the 4th Infantry Division, to be distributed to local Iraqi communities. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Coltin Heller, 109th MPAD, USD-N PAO)

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