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Beauty is in the eye of the airmen

Whiteman AFB airmen volunteer at Lexington historic site

Whitemen AFB Airmen Chris Clute, left, Zach Koutz and Bryan Dubose, smooth out the gravel used as a pathway through the raised garden beds behind the Anderson House Saturday. A group of volunteers from the 509th squadron arrived at the historic site to participate in National Park Day. (Photo by Liz Johnson/Richmond News)

By Liz Johnson, Staff Writer

Saturday dawned cold, raw and dreary. But the weather didn’t stop the airmen from Whiteman Air Force Base from volunteering at the Battle of Lexington Historic Site to help with the National Park Day cleanup.

“Lexington is the sister city for our squadron – the 509th Contracting,” said Lesla Vaughn, who brought her two young children, Johnny, 6, and Ziza, 3, to help pick up trash around the battlefield. “We come up here four times a year.”

Volunteers from Whiteman and the Lexington area were scattered throughout the historic site, and up the street to McDonald’s, at the corner of Main Street and Business 13, picking up trash and debris Saturday.

“Janet Judkins is our coordinator from Whiteman,” Vaughn said. “She teams up with Lexington to find stuff to do in the city.”

History buffs, community leaders and preservationists teamed up with the Civil War Trust at more than 130 sites in 30 states to volunteer services on Park Day according to the National Park Service.

Park Day has been in place for more than 20 years, attracting volunteers of all ages and abilities, with one common goal – to serve the community and American history at historic sites nationwide.

“The Anderson House is one of the old houses still standing and in excellent condition,” said Lexington’s historic site administrator Chris Fritsche. “Our staff is always open to volunteers.”

One of the major projects of the day was getting the Anderson House garden ready for planting. Airmen from Whiteman were spreading gravel brought to them by John Maki, who handles the site’s maintenance. As he dumped tractorful after tractorful of gravel on the walkways, the airmen spread out the gravel paths.

The complete story is in the Friday, April 7, 2017 Richmond News.

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