DSCR employees and Bensley students celebrate the holidays at annual tree lighting ceremony

By Cathy Hopkins DLA Aviation Public Affairs Office

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Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia, employees kicked off the holiday season Dec. 14 in the Lotts Conference Center amidst the joyful sounds of Bensley Elementary School 5th graders who sang holiday songs.

The choir begin the ceremony singing the National Anthem and then fifth graders Klely Pacas, Emily Comayagua and Jason Clawson led the audience in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

Dr. Patrice Wilson, Bensley Elementary School principal, thanked employees for having the choir out to perform each year and for their continued support during the school year.

Defense Logistics Agency Aviation and DSCR Commander Air Force Brig. Gen. Linda Hurry drew parallels between herself and Wilson. Both are new to their jobs and the yearly ceremony.

“I’m unbelievably excited to be part of this program and to see our future perform,” said Hurry.

Before turning to the program’s main event, the children singing, Hurry gave a short safety briefing urging employees to be safe, to not drink and drive and recapped highlights of yearly accomplishments to include:  a sales growth from $4.4 billion to $5.2 billion in 2017, an increase in depot-level repairable contracts from $2.5 billion to $3.3 billion and a rise in material availability to 88 percent this past September.

“The year has gone by fast and it has been an amazing ride,” she said. “Thank you for your hard work and dedication, for the tremendous efforts you make every day in supporting our aviation warfighters.”

She also took the opportunity to give hometown appreciation to DSCR employees and teams, recognizing the following awards:

· DLA Senior Non-commissioned Officer of the Year – Air Force Master Sgt. Gabriela Camarillo

· DLA Joint Reserve Forces Junior Enlisted Member of the Year – Air Force Reserve Technical Sgt. Gregory Sprouse

· One of the Top 10 Outstanding DLA Employees of the Year – Ana Bossman

· DLA Police Department of the Year – DLA Installation Operations at Richmond’s Police Department

· DLA Fire Department of the Year – DLA Installation Operations at Richmond’s Fire and Emergency Services

· DLA Fire Prevention Program of the Year – DLA Installation Operations at Richmond’s  Fire Prevention Office

· DLA Security and Emergency Services Professional of the Year Award – Don Bartlett

· DLA Team Performance Award – F/A 18 Fuel Foam Filler Long-term Contract Team

Following the recognitions, students Kairee Hamilton and Jennifer Cubias Mejia joined the commander to flip the switch and light up the tree.

The audience then laughed and got misty-eyed over a variety of holiday songs including “Better Bundle Up,” “Snow,” “Here Comes the Snow,” “Mr. Frosty,” and old-time favorites like “Socks,” “Just One Candle” and “Hot Chocolate.”

After the singing, Santa and Sparky the Fire Dog made a surprise visit to the children, shaking hands and passing out candy canes before the children returned to school.