By Marin Reynes
Since 1943, during the height of World War II, March has been declared Red Cross Month. For us, this is a simple reminder to reflect and thank those who selflessly serve our service members, veterans and their families across the globe as well as at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) and Naval Support Activity Bethesda (NSAB).
WRNMMMC and NSAB have the largest Red Cross service to the Armed Forces volunteer force in the world. More than 600 volunteers contribute over 6,000 hours monthly across the installation and in the medical center. Red Cross volunteers range from civilians to active duty service members and from administrative personnel to medical doctors supporting activities on base and within the hospital. These services include greeting every wounded, ill and injured service member who arrives via medical evacuations globally; supporting Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) events managing Red Cross programs; volunteering in more than 75 clinics throughout the hospital; and adding more than 50 youth volunteers in the Red Cross teen volunteer program every summer.