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News > Commentary - Straight Talk: Aiding earthquake and tsunami victims
Straight Talk: Aiding earthquake and tsunami victims

Posted 4/7/2011   Updated 4/7/2011 Email story   Print story


Commentary by Col. Stacy L. Yike
66th Air Base Group commander

4/7/2011 - HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- Question: I've read and heard so much about the earthquake and tsunami devastation in Japan. Does Hanscom plan to have any fundraisers or collections to help the victims?

Response: The devastation in Japan is truly overwhelming. My heart goes out to all the people who are affected by this disaster. The Department of Defense has pulled together multiple agencies to assist with relief efforts to meet the needs of military families in, and returning from, Japan.

You can find much of that info through the Military Community and Family Policy website.

Military OneSource has established a page chock full of information, including ways to donate.

Additionally, the Red Cross is providing assistance, and contributions can be made online on the Red Cross website at www.redcross.org.

Locally, some organizations are helping in different ways.

In times of crisis, the Hanscom Chapel often provides community members the opportunity to respond in immediate and tangible ways. Recently, the chapel collected special offerings during their weekend worship services for the crisis in Japan. The chapel community responded generously with a combined Protestant and Catholic cash collection of more than $3,000. This money was forwarded to assist those in need through the coordinated support efforts of the American Red Cross and Catholic Relief Services.

Meanwhile, the Electronic Systems Center is contributing greatly to the mission side of earthquake and tsunami relief efforts in Japan. The ESC-managed Eagle Vision imagery collection team rushed to action within hours of the devastating 9.0 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami that struck Northeast Japan. The team is providing the Japan imagery to U.S. Pacific Command, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency and U.S. Geological Survey so they can perform damage assessment and help organize and support relief operations.

We haven't planned a fund raiser across the base, but private organizations and unofficial activities at Hanscom could choose to have a fundraiser in support of the earthquake and tsunami victims. Contact the 66th Force Support Squadron at 781-255-1363 to get details about how to do this.

To see other Air Force operations supporting the effort, visit www.af.mil/operationtomodachi.asp or www.af.mil/japandisasterrelief.asp.  

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