U.S. Soldiers recently helped culminate an eight-month reconstruction project here with a ribbon cutting ceremony officially opening the Bassa Girls Primary School in Tal Jal near Kirkuk.
Soldiers of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, “Outlaws” 1st Battalion, 37th Armor, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, out of Fort Bliss, Texas, along with the Hawijah District Council, conducted the ceremony presenting the school which will provide quality education for more than 50 young girls around this area, July 6.
The project was funded by the Commander’s Emergency Relief Fund, according to 1st Lt. Nathaniel Cox, company operations intelligence support team leader for the Outlaws.
The leadership of Hawijah also played an important role in the building of this school, he said.
“The Hawijah District Council’s Reconstruction Committee gave us the local government perspective on the project; they were present for the inspections and in the end gave the final approval on the building,” Cox said.
The 1/37th Armor Commander, Lt. Col. Geoffrey Catlett, joined the Iraqi leaders in cutting the ribbon, followed by dignitaries speaking to the children who will benefit from the project.
“We are very pleased with the new school,” said a member of the Hawijah District Council. “It is just what this village needs.”
Catlett agreed, saying the school was very well built.
Following the ceremony, the children in the area were given Beanie Babies, hats, school supplies and medical attention from the “Outlaw” Soldiers.
“This is my favorite part of the job being out here doing something good for the children,” said Outlaw Commander, Capt. Scott D. Wares, as he watched the children eagerly receive their gifts.
Written by Pfc. Jessica Luhrs
1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division