An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.













NEWS | Oct. 23, 2017

U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers help communities in Lares

By Spc. Anthony Martinez 1st Mission Support Command

U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers assigned to the 1st Mission Support Command, also known as “Garita Warriors”, escorted by local police and several federal agencies, delivered water and food supplies to the communities of Lares, Puerto Rico, Oct. 20, 2017.

The 15 vehicle convoy transported approximately 16 pallets of water, thousands of boxes of food, and about three thousands of gallons of potable water.

After a 2 hour drive, the convoy arrived at the Sports and Recreation Center in Lares. The team established a distribution point to take the supplies to the most remote communities. Children and other residents received them with smiles, claps and celebration, but most importantly thankfulness for the support of America's Army Reserve.

“I’m very grateful for the help,” said Ricardo Sanchez, a resident of community La Torre in Lares. “It’s not the first time we received help, but any help is welcome. Bottled water is hard to find around Lares. If it wouldn't have been for the Army Reserve, we would have no water.”

The “Garita Warriors” used smaller vehicles to reach areas like the community of Rio Prieto where trucks cannot reach because of the narrow roads in the community.

Delivering food and water door by door, families of the community Rio Prieto shared their gratitude and thoughts.

“We really thank and appreciate that the Army Reserve has come to a distant place like this to help us,”said Ricardo Acevedo, resident of Rio Prieto in Lares, Puerto Rico. “With the Army Reserve’s help we will get up and keep moving forward.”

Spc. Jose Nieves, a mortuary affairs specialist assigned to the 311th Quartermaster Company in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, delivered food and water saw and felt the struggle of the communities.

“We have to stay together,” said Nieves. “As an island without many resources, we have to share what we have and we are here to share hope and give back the hope that they lost.”

The Mayor of Lares, Roberto Pagan Centeno, recognized the efforts of numerous agencies including the U.S. Army Reserve.

“I feel grateful with all the agencies helping us,” said Pagan. “With the help of the Army Reserve, we have gone for our second trip helping families door by door.”

Pagan also mentioned that Lares consists of 11 communities, averaging 3,000 residents per community. Lares is the home of approximately 30,000 Puerto Ricans.

The Soldiers from the Army Reserve in Puerto Rico are currently providing great support to the local community by purifying water, clearing roads, delivering food and water and other very important tasks around the island.