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NEWS | April 5, 2019

Puerto Rico children talk with U.S. Soldier in Poland

By U.S. Army Reserve 1st Mission Support Command

Third grade students, who are members of the 4H Program at the Elementary School Eli Ramos Rosario in Barceloneta, Puerto Rico, had the opportunity to talk through a video call, April 2, with Spc. Marcus Moyett, from the 266th Ordnance Company, Army Reserve-Puerto Rico, 1st Mission Support Command,  who is currently deployed to Poland.

As part of the 4H events, the students sent greeting cards to the Army Reserve-Puerto Rico Soldiers earlier during the year.

The students, who never before had seen a Soldier, were very enthusiastic.

"Am I dreaming? Are you a real Soldier?" asked one of the children to the deployed Soldier, while the other students stayed focused on screen.

The Soldier used the opportunity to thank the group for their efforts.

"Thank you very much for your cards and messages of support. They mean a lot to us, especially when you are far away from home," said Moyett, who has been in Poland for approximately eight months.

For the teachers, this was a very special moment, because the students had the opportunity to see the results of their efforts.

"In class we explain the role of the Soldiers and the importance of their missions and all the things they do for us. With that in mind, we decided to send greeting cards expressing our gratitude to our deployed service members. The children got motivated and created those beautiful cards with their own hands," said Lisa Morales Rivera, the 4H club liaison at the school.

For Angel Ocasio Rosado, the third grade teacher, the opportunity to talk with the deployed Soldier supplemented their block of instructions.

"We work with the comprehensive development of our students, especially their character. We take the time to teach them about the freedoms that we enjoy as a society, and how our Soldiers sacrifice to defend those liberties," said Ocasio.

"I want to thank you for taking the time to do this. This is something very special, and a significant experience that I know will positively impact the lives of these children. This type of interaction should be happening more often in our schools," added Ocasio. 

The elementary school receives students from five neighborhoods in the Barceloneta municipality, to include Garrochales, Palenque, Pueblo, Lanadas and Fortuna. Barceloneta is located in the north region of the U.S. territory, bordering the Atlantic Ocean.

The goal of the 4-H program is to develop citizenship, leadership, responsibility and life skills of youth through experiential learning programs and a positive youth development approach.

As member of the largest federal U.S. Army command in the Caribbean, the Army Reserve-Puerto Rico Soldiers rely on the local community support, to successfully accomplish their missions.