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North Carolina National Guard delivers PPE to school nurses

By Spc. Hannah Tarkelly | 382nd Public Affairs Detachment | July 6, 2020

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CENTRAL, N.C. - The North Carolina National Guard helped distribute personal protective equipment (PPE) for school nurses in public and charter schools throughout the state June 29-30.

The NCNG is working with North Carolina Emergency Management, N.C. Department of Health and Human Services and local food banks to help support COVID-19 relief efforts.

As schools plan to reopen in the fall, the NCNG is working to ensure schools have the necessary medical supplies to help protect students from COVID-19.

For the first time since COVID-19 began, the NCNG is distributing PPE to all public and charter schools in North Carolina.

With the PPE supplies, “the teachers and students going to school are going to be able to stay safe and not get sick,” said North Carolina Army National Guard Spc. Dillon Pressley, assigned to the 1451st Transportation Company.

The large-scale distribution to all Tar Heel counties was conducted from two warehouses. Approximately 8,000 thermometers, 4,000 face shields, 39,000 gowns and 166,000 surgical masks were distributed from the warehouse in Central.

Soldiers and Airmen began operations early in the morning with a five-step process. The amount of PPE and where it is going was determined. The Soldiers and Airmen then gathered the PPE, boxed it, weighed and labeled the boxes for shipment, and shipped them out.

“I enjoy being able to serve my country,” said NCARNG Sgt. Carl Orander, assigned to the 1451st Transportation Company. “It’s what I signed up for.”

The school packs were shipped to central locations such as warehouses where surrounding schools can pick up their supplies.

The NCNG distributed the products and worked with shipping companies such as UPS and Estes to transport the supplies across North Carolina.

Pressley has been on orders to help support COVID-19 relief efforts since March 25th, driving more than 11,000 miles in light medium tactical vehicles to deliver medical supplies all over the state.

“It means a lot to me to be able to help the community, first responders, nurses, doctors, and now kids,” Pressley said.