On Nov. 30, members of the USS West Virginia U.S. Navy crew arrived at the West Virginia Children's Home in Elkins to spend time with the youth and staff. Members of the crew spent quality time interacting with the youth and treating all the youth to a night out at McDonald's. As an early Christmas surprise, members of the crew presented gifts and gift cards to each youth.
According to the home's director, Carson Markley, the USS West Virginia "adopted" the Children's Home in 1988 and have been actively visiting the youth and doing special projects for the facility ever since. The crew members seem to enjoy spending time with the youth, being positive role-models for the children and lending a hand wherever needed. Since the beginning of the "adoption," many children have developed a military interest and have gone on to pursue a military career.
The USS West Virginia is a ballistic sub that is presently dry docked in Virginia, but by early summer will carry the 250 sailors back out to sea. The sailors are divided into two crews, the Gold and the Blue.
From left are Carson Markley, West Virginia Children’s Home director; MTC Allen Barcus; Janice Brady, West Virginia Children’s Home assistant director; and Lt. Cmdr. Jeff Yackeren.
"We will definitely be back to visit with the kids and staff and look forward to a continual relationship. I appreciate the hospitality of the staff, and we are here for the kids and whatever needs you have," said Lt. Cmdr. Jeff M. Yackeren, U.S. Navy executive officer and 20-year veteran who supervises the crew's visits.