Members of the 993rd Medical Detachment Veterinary Services came to Garfield Elementary School on Friday.
The visit was the work of SPC Marissa Herbert, a member of the Army Reserve Unit and the mother of Garfield fourth grader Zalynn. Herbert said most of these kids have had no contact with people in the military and had many misconceptions. Herbert, who does a great deal of volunteer work at the school, cited the response of one of the boys when he found out she was in the Army Reserve. He said, “You must be a cook.” When she asked him why he said that, he replied, “Because you’re a girl.” She decided that these misconceptions needed to be addressed and has been working for over a year and half to get permission to bring members of her unit to the school.
SPC Herbert is part of the unit that maintains equipment and vehicles needed by the veterinary staff. Herbert said that much of the unit’s work is with the dogs of the K-9 units but that the Army still has cavalry horses that need care. There are also situations where the staff treats pets, especially when deployed for disaster response.
The unit brought two Humvees and a Light Mobility Tactical Vehicle, military nomenclature for a truck, to the school. After an assembly where Herbert and members of her unit introduced themselves and answered questions about being in the Army Reserve, the students were able to visit the military vehicles and ask more questions.