Navajo-Hopi Nations,Flagstaff & Winslow News
Sat, Oct. 31

TC High's JROTC Toys for Tots 2006
TC Juvenile Center, Navajo Police partner with TC High in character building and generosity for reservation students

TCMJROTC students under the supervision of 1st Sgt. Kenneth Bustamante and GySgt Timothy Shaner. From left to right: TC High’s MJROTC students: Zachary Newland, Jordan Adison, Jarvis Bedonie, Ariel Oginski, Kensley Dayzie, Danielle Boone, Ambrose Begay and Monty Begay (Photo by Rosanda Suetopka Thayer).

TCMJROTC students under the supervision of 1st Sgt. Kenneth Bustamante and GySgt Timothy Shaner. From left to right: TC High’s MJROTC students: Zachary Newland, Jordan Adison, Jarvis Bedonie, Ariel Oginski, Kensley Dayzie, Danielle Boone, Ambrose Begay and Monty Begay (Photo by Rosanda Suetopka Thayer).

TUBA CITY-Raising the bar in academic excellence is a priority at Tuba City Unified School District, but so is student character-building, understanding generosity and giving back to your own community through individual volunteer service.

Throughout the year, the MJROTC program at Tuba City High School makes an effort to get students to do community service and work with younger students in mentor-volunteer roles by team partnering with local adult community service programs.

One of the bigger projects for the MJROTC every year is assisting the Navajo Police Department's "Toys for Tots" program that is organized by Officer Carolyn Secody.

Officer Secody is assisted by Navajo brothers Fred Davis, Corrections Officer of the TC Juvenile Detention Center and toy drive volunteer coordinator, Benjamin Davis.

The Davis brothers have worked with this annual Christmas toy drive program for the past eight years and utilize their own personal money for lodging and meals as they go to California to pick up these toys for needy families.

Fred Davis, who started volunteering in 1999, originally worked with Navajo Nation police officer LoJann Dennison, who helped him raise the original toy drive delivery funds by promoting local concerts.

As part of the annual "Toys for Tots" program, Marine Corps volunteers throughout the state of California spend the whole year gathering new toys and new clothing items from various corporations for Arizona reservation students who might not otherwise get presents during this holiday season.

Two other local TC community offices that assist in this huge effort are the Office of Environmental Health-who donate the use of their cargo trailers and staff time-and the WorkForce Development Program who also donate much volunteer staff time.

First Sargeant Kenneth Bustamante, drill instructor and teacher of the 2006 TC MJROTC Drill Team and Marksmanship Team, is proud that his 124 MJROTC students are a big part of this community benefit drive.

The students work the entire week before the Christmas holiday, which ends with Officer Secody and the Davis brothers providing leadership for the team by showing students that generosity and selfless acts of caring are a big part of being a responsible adult.

For more information about the annual "Toys for Tots" drive, contact Officer Secody at the Navajo Nation Police Department in Tuba City at 928-283-3111 or the TCHS MJROTC Program, 1st Sgt. Bustamante at 928-283-1047.

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