PEMBROKE PINES, FL, UNITED STATES
Story by Sgt. Leia Tascarini
PEMBROKE PINES, Fla.- Memorial Healthcare Systems Memorial Foundation partnered with the Rotary Club of Weston, Chef Larry, and the Vernon Carey Foundation to provide dinner for Soldiers and local partners at C.B Smith Park Community Based Testing Site (CBTS).
The Florida National Guard has been assisting Memorial Healthcare run the state’s first CBTS location in response to the COVID-19 pandemic with the support of local law enforcement, city of Pembroke Pines parks and recreation staff, and other local groups.
“Memorial Health partnered with these groups to donate a meal to Soldiers and the staff that have been supporting this site” said Cpt. Derek Henry, company commander of Bravo Company, 2-124 Infantry Regiment. “The Soldiers were surprised, we are happy to have some fellowship during this time especially with the staff that has been working with us. We are grateful for the community and how they have supported us during this mission.”
C.B. Smith Park CBTS is currently being supported by Taskforce Bravo 2-124th Regiment, 53rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team (IBCT). The CBTS is a joint operation between the FLNG and Memorial Healthcare Systems. The site is currently staffed with over 200 Soldiers and local personnel who have collected over 24,000 samples since the site opened.
“We wanted to do something in support of our frontline community members, healthcare workers and Guard members through the ‘Feeding the Front Lines’ initiative,” said Jim Norton from the Rotary Club of Weston. “There is a special place in our hearts for our veterans and those serving everyday.”
The Florida National Guard has more than 2,700 Guardsmen on duty in support of Florida’s COVID-19 response. Soldiers and Airmen are currently operating nine Community Based Testing Sites locations, and have administered over 113,000 sample collections to date at those sites. In addition, the Guard is supporting the Florida Department of Health’s screening operations at seven Florida airports.