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Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany

Readiness Enabler for Operational Forces  •
Marines race to Talladega for fundraising event

By Lance Cpl. Kevin J. Ridlon | | May 6, 2004

Marines of Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany enjoyed a beautiful, hot weekend filled with speeding race cars and thousands of NASCAR fans yelling "get 'er done," as they worked a concession stand and sold beverages in the stands at the Talladega Super Speedway, April 23-25.

Earl Jones, Jacob Wiese, David Hinesbey, John Ankney, David Flores, Kyle Holdmann, Timothy Mantell, Kati Propst, Sandor Toledo, Jared Wolfe,  Derek Jansma, Christopher Burgess, Jonathan Bronson, Sebastion Dennis, Lynden Gwartney, Christopher O'Roark, Jeffery Herman,  Steven May,  Thomas Brooks  and Thomas and Tremakia Summerlin were the Marines who traveled to Talladega to work to raise money for the Enlisted and Staff Noncommissioned Officer Marine Corps Birthday Balls.

"We had 21 Marines total that went: four Staff NCOs, and 17 NCOs and below," said Earl Jones, equipment specialist, Marine Corps Systems Command, "so 75 percent of the money will go towards the enlisted ball and 25 percent towards the Staff NCO ball.

Jones went on to say that after a total of three days working at the race $9,000-$11,000 was raised from working at the concession stand and walking in the stands.

"After AmeriCrown, an East Coast catering company for NASCAR events, takes its portion of the money, we should have $900-$1,100," Jones said.

The Marines sold food and beverages at a concession stand that was located at the top of the tower stands, and also walked the stands selling beverages to the fans.

"I thought it was a great experience and the appreciation the civilians gave us was great," said Jared Wolfe, fiscal clerk, S-4. "I would definitely go again. Any way we can earn money for the ball is worth it."

Some of the Marines also got a chance to go and tour the garage area and see the Marine car, as well as meet and talk with the pit crew and driver.

"For my first experience with NASCAR, I couldn't have had a better time," said Lynden Gwartney, travel clerk, Resource Management. "Overall, it was a great experience, and I would like to do it again."

The Marines worked the stands for the qualifying and practice sessions for the Busch Series on Friday, the Busch Series race and qualifying session for the Aaron's 499 on Saturday, and the Aaron's 499 on Sunday.

"I would just like to thank all of the Marines who participated," Jones said. "They volunteered their own time to go make money for the ball. Also, all of the Marines were very professional to the fans, AmeriCrown staff and especially to each other. All of the Marines' hard work and professionalism made this trip to Talladega both enjoyable and memorable. I can't wait until the next one."