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Marines get dirty to clean up St Louis

By Lance Cpl. Christofer P. Baines, Lance Cpl. Jacob D. Osborne | | June 20, 2011

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Marines from 3rd Battalion, 24th Marine Regiment, Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force Marine Week, brought the famous Marine work ethic to the largest urban park in America and several community gardens to restore and beautify these locations.

Boy Scout Troop 981 joined the Marines today, and during similar events throughout the week hundreds of native St. Louisans will sweat alongside the Marines while improving neighborhoods throughout the city.

Marines are going to start helping the community, and hopefully the people of the city will pick up where the Corps leaves off, said Cpl. Jerod Richardson, squad leader, Company I, 3/24. It shows the Corps cares.

Near Hyde Park, St. Louis, Marines removed weeds, laid down burlap and mulch, and prepared a community garden for planting.  This garden is used to teach young teenagers agricultural skills.

Jason Calahan, missionary and program director for Sun Ministries said the Marines did impressive work; they worked through the heat and humidity with the determination one only finds in a Marine.

In Forest Park, Marines refinished trail and built a bridge; for which they dug trenches to keep it dry and laid mulch. With Troop 981’s help, they completed the task within a day.

“Boy scouts are working with the Marine Corps on some service projects throughout Marine week,” said Ike Eicher, an adult leader of Troop 981. “I think the boy scouts look up to them, here’s someone who gives back to their community, gives back to their country and the commitment it takes.”

Today it wasn’t just the neighborhoods that reaped the rewards, the Marines walked away with more than when they arrived.

“Makes me proud, lets me know we are helping out,” said Lance Cpl. Westley Martinez, rifleman, Company I, 3/24.

Throughout Marine Week, the Corps will continue to give back to St. Louis. Other events include urban clean-ups, hospital visits, garden maintenance and a blood drive.

For more information on Marine Week St. Louis visit marines.mil/marineweek or Facebook.com/Marines.


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