On Monday, an Air Force KC-10 cargo plane was loaded at the Youngstown Airbase bound for Saint Rita, Honduras. Mission of Love prepared 22 pallets weighing 61,000 pounds that included supplies destined for schools, health centers, nursing homes and residents of the poorest communities in Saint Rita and nearby Progreso, both in Yoro, Honduras.
“The humanitarian aid that is being sent by the Mission of Love will be used for the children, widows and the elderly in the poorest municipality's of Progreso, Yoro and Santa Rita Yoro,” said Julio de Galdemez Perez, Mission of Love consignee. ”Your donations will benefit schools, health centers, nursing homes and the residents of poor communities, housing projects, and medical brigades. We are all waiting for your help and will always keep you informed with documents and photos in regard to the distribution plan."
The KC-10 aircraft flew into Youngstown out of the 514th Air Mobility Wing in Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. The cargo will be flown to Charleston Air Force Base in South Carolina where another transport plane will take the shipment direct to Soto Cano Air Base, Honduras. At that base, a Mission of Love ground team will take receipt of the cargo and handle the distribution in the poverty-stricken areas.
Price said her organization has long passed the 50 flight mark under the Denton Program. This program allows private U.S. citizens and organizations to utilize space on U.S. military cargo planes to ship humanitarian aid throughout the world. The program is jointly administered by a government agency known as USAID, the Department of State, and the Department of Defense. While it moves much-needed supplies to poverty-stricken areas, it also provides a training activity for the cargo plane flight crews who partake in a “live mission.”
For Price, the mission is never ending. The real reward of the work, she said, is when the little child in the jungles of Guatemala smiles because he has his first pair of shoes, or maybe paper and a pencil that will help him in school and eventually, through education, will raise him out of poverty.
“It is a never-ending Mission of Love,” Price said. "This is truly a team effort to service those in need and to build diplomacy together.”
Photo special to the Town Crier
Lt. Col Jeanne Bisesi, Kathy Price and MSgt. Kevin Massie overlooking the KC-10 load of humanitarian supplies to be airlifted to Honduras on Monday.