Michigan National Guard
Story by Master Sgt. David Eichaker
AUGUSTA, Mich.—The Michigan Army and Air National Guard recently came together to host a vaccination clinic for service members and Department of Defense (DOD) personnel at Fort Custer Training Center.
“We have 210 vaccines scheduled to be administered today,” said U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Chelsea Herman, Michigan Medical Detachment Detroit Light Guard Army, Michigan Army National Guard. “Anyone who is in the DOD scope of work are able to come in and get a vaccine.”
Herman, who joined the Michigan Army National Guard at the age of 17, currently has more than 18 years in the Guard, enjoys her interactions with not only Soldiers, but DOD personnel and other military branches.
“Most of the civilian contractors work in the dining facility or as housekeepers,” she said. “We are also vaccinating other DOD contractors, employees from the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), and service members from the Navy, Army and Air Force, adding that Marines came through earlier this week.”
“Yesterday we had a reserve unit who is stationed here for month-long training come in and get vaccinated as they are preparing for deployment—it’s good to have interaction with other services,” said Herman.
Anyone who is in the DOD scope of work is able to receive the vaccine.
“I think immunity against any virus is important,” said retired U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Tim Cronk, who is a DLA employee. “I am not only protecting myself, but protecting everyone else.”
“It’s important for me personally, for my family, and for everyone else I am around,” he said.
Cronk enlisted in the Navy in 1983 and spent the first 11 years as enlisted before becoming an officer.
“I earned a commission through the limited duty officer program and retired as a lieutenant commander after 24 years and I retired in 2007,” he said. “As soon as I received the message for the vaccine, I called and got an appointment—my wife is an emergency room nurse and has received both shots, so makes sense for me to get it.”
This event more than doubled the vaccines administered a day prior.
“During yesterday’s event, we administered 100 vaccines to DOD personnel,” said Herman.
The Detroit native and noncommissioned officer in charge of the event managed the entire operation.
“I help ensure there is a good workflow and there are no concerns at the various stations during the process,” said Herman. “It’s good to have interaction with other services.”