SPMAGTF-SC Marines Hold Opening Ceremony for Honduras School Projects

Capt. Phoebe Riner, staff judge advocate with Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force - Southern Command, shakes hands with a child at the opening ceremony for the Municipality of Trujillo school renovation projects at the Taufick Bendeck elementary school, June 15, 2017. The school is one of t

TRUJILLO – U.S. Marines with Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force – Southern Command held an opening ceremony at Taufick Bendeck elementary school, Trujillo, Honduras, June 15, 2017, to signify the start of several renovation projects in the local area.

A team of combat engineers, heavy equipment operators and motor vehicle operators from the Logistics Combat Element, SPMAGTF-SC, will be working to remodel four local schools in the area.

“We’ve partnered with the Honduran government, specifically the city of Trujillo, to work on four schools that were selected through the Department of Education,” said U.S. Marine Capt. Jarrod Deitrich, Trujillo site officer in charge, LCE, SPMAGTF-SC. “They reached out and selected the schools based on the needs within their department.”

For the next five months, the Marines will work at the following schools: Ana Palmore, 11 Febrero, Elvira Tome and Taufick Bendeck. “We are going to spend four weeks renovating each school, for a total of five months,” Dietrich said. “We’re happy to be working hand in hand with the Honduran government.”

In addition to the infrastructure improvement projects in Trujillo as well as in Guatemala, the Marines with SPMAGTF-SC are conducting security cooperation training in Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and, should the need arise, are on standby for disaster relief efforts in the region at the request of the host governments.

While addressing the audience at the event, Col. Michael V. Samarov, the commanding officer of SPMAGTF-SC, stated that he hopes the relationship between the Marines and the people of Honduras is one of mutual benefit. “Perhaps our greatest privilege is the opportunity we have to make a positive difference, learn from your rich experiences and culture, and make new friendships,” he said.