Soldiers from B Troop, 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division made quick work Tuesday of hanging Christmas lights and garland on light poles in downtown Junction City.
After finishing the lights, they decorated the “Big Red One” Christmas tree and storefront at Tom’s Men’s Wear at Seventh and Washington streets for the Hometown Christmas window/business decorating contest.
“It was a great day,” said Phyllis Fitzgerald, Society of the First Infantry Division executive director. “We probably got 25 soldiers here helping — it's just a continuation of the partnership. And it's … about the revitalization of our downtown.”
She said the soldiers had been looking for a way to help and reached out to the United Way, which in turn sent them to her.
“I’m just glad for our partnership with Fort Riley and the soldiers wanting to come out and be a part of our community,” Fitzgerald said.
In return she presented each of the soldiers who helped a one-year membership to the Society of the 1st Infantry Division.
“Our mission at the society is to carry on the legacy and the memory of the 1st Infantry Division and to honor all of our fallen comrades, which there's 12,947 of them since World War One,” she said. “There's another 631 names that need to be added to our monument in Washington DC from the fallen soldiers from (Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom).
“We are honored today to be able to give all these soldiers a free one-year membership in the society of the 1st Infantry Division. That membership was paid for by one of our Vietnam veteran members.”