428TH FS supports local schools amidst COVID-19, distributes face coverings
By Airman 1st Class Gary Hilton, 366th Fighter Wing
/ Published August 24, 2020
MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho --
As COVID-19 challenges continue, Mountain Home School District facilities cautiously begin to reopen their doors. Approximately 4,000 students are expected to flood the halls later this year. A major concern is supplying masks for students.
The Republic of Singapore Air Force 428TH Fighter Squadron has come to the rescue. Lt. Col. Shewan Goh and Lt. Col. Nicholas Jurewicz, senior ranking officer and commander of the 428TH FS, respectively, and other officials distributed face coverings to the Mountain Home School District, Aug. 6, 2020.
“We know that the schools will reopen, and that they have had issues procuring some of these masks,” Goh said. “We are happy to help out the schools in the Mountain Home School District, both the elementary school on Mountain Home AFB, as well as the schools in town,”
Mountain Home’s Singaporean community has a strong presence on base and contributes to the school district’s populated school attendance. Up to 50 students are currently scheduled to attend local schools.
“This is just a small part of what we (the 428TH) can do to help out the community,” Goh said. “We want to help the community that we are a part of as much as we can.”
“The pandemic can pull people apart and keep them isolated,” Jurewicz said. “But I think it is an example of people coming together, person-to-person, organization-to-organization, and even country-to-country.”
The 428TH delivered 2,000 face coverings to the MHSD office, where they were received by James Gilbert, Mountain Home School District superintendent, Allen Niksich, MHAFB school liaison, and Rich Sykes, mayor of Mountain Home.
“We’ve never seen ourselves as operating alone, which means that we are in this pandemic together,” Goh said. “We’ve always felt pretty safe in this community. Whether we are in good times or bad times, we have always been together, as a family.”