Volunteers: Making a living by giving
By Chris Calkins, 45th Space Wing Public Affairs
/ Published March 07, 2014
PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- Col. Allison Bowden, commander, 45th Medical Group, served as the host for
the Annual Red Cross Volunteer Luncheon held Tuesday at the Tides.
She got right down to business when she addressed the approximately 120-or-so volunteers in attendance, along with other Medical Group members and leaders from around "Team Patrick-Cape."
"Today we are recognizing the men and women who have selflessly given their free time to assist us here at the 45th Space Wing - and specifically to our medical group," she said.
"It's no secret to anyone that we couldn't do what we do without them and they are as much a part of our "Mighty Medics Team" as anyone else in our unit," she said emphatically.
Currently, there are about 140 volunteers on the Med Group's books, with about 90 of them actively involved in volunteering. Of those 90, approximately 50 of them volunteer in the pharmacy.
One of those is 92-year-old Rue King, who has more than two decades of volunteer work in various offices and agencies around the 45th Space Wing. She currently volunteers her time at the Satellite Pharmacy.
"Why do I do it?" she asked, flashing a million dollar smile. "It's simple really," she said. "Like everyone else here, we all love giving back to people, and I love being around these great young people."
"If all the folks out in the waiting room saw how hard these young people work back here (in the pharmacy) they'd never fuss again about waiting a few minutes for their medications," she said.
Lt. Col Cherie Mauntel, flight commander for the pharmacy, chuckled when she heard Rue's comments, but certainly didn't back away from them.
"Here at the 45th Medical Group, we are the 3rd busiest outpatient pharmacy in the Air Force and we process more than 439,000 prescriptions annually for 53,000 DoD beneficiaries," Mauntel said.
"Rue wasn't exaggerating, and we really couldn't come close to these numbers without the help of each and every one of our Red Cross volunteers," she said. "They make all our lives so much better."
It seems Winston Churchill had it right a long, long time ago. "You make a living by what you get. You make a life by what you give," said the former United Kingdom Prime Minister.
If you are interested in becoming a Red Cross Volunteer, please call 321-494-8318.