Life Scout coordinates servicemember volunteers to beautify Kakazu Takadai Park

U.S. Marines, sailors and boy scouts volunteered to beautify the Kakazu Ridge Park by fertilizing cherry trees and donating benches in Ginowan, Okinawa, Japan, Nov. 14, 2020. The event was coordinated by Jacob Preston, a life scout, whose goal was to complete his Eagle Scout Project by giving back to the City of Ginowan. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Brennan J. Beauton)
U.S. Marines, sailors and boy scouts volunteered to beautify the Kakazu Ridge Park by fertilizing cherry trees and donating benches in Ginowan, Okinawa, Japan, Nov. 14, 2020. The event was coordinated by Jacob Preston, a life scout, whose goal was to complete his Eagle Scout Project by giving back to the City of Ginowan. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Brennan J. Beauton)

Life Scout coordinates servicemember volunteers to beautify Kakazu Takadai Park

by Courtesy Story
U.S. Marine Corps

GINOWAN, OKINAWA, Japan – U.S. Marines, sailors and boy scouts volunteered to beautify the Kakazu Ridge Park by fertilizing cherry trees and donating benches on Nov. 14.

The event was coordinated by Jacob Preston, a life scout and son of U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. John R. Preston, the Marine Aircraft Group 36 sergeant major. Preston's goal was to help the city of Ginowan and complete his Eagle Scout project. An Eagle Scout project is an opportunity for a scout member of the Boy Scouts of America to demonstrate leadership of others while performing a project that benefits his community. Preston reached out to Ginowan City and Marine Corps officials to bring his culminating scout project to life.

Kakazu Takadai Park is just minutes from Marine Corps Airstation Futenma and is popularly known as one of several historic World War II battlesites on the island.

“Ginowan planted these cherry trees in 2018 as a sign of peace between the Americans and Japanese because this was the one the first major battle sites of Okinawa,” said Preston. “The trees outgrew where they were planted, so I wanted to re-beautify the area.”

Keigo Wada, the deputy mayor of Ginowan, showed his appreciation to Preston and all those who volunteered their time early on a Saturday morning.

“There are a lot of people that visit this park to study the past and history,” said Wada. “I really see the Boy Scouts effort and contribution today and I thank you for that.”

Fertilizer was placed at the stems of the trees to aid in their growth. Navy Seabees assisted in the construction of the benches that were to be donated. Marines and the Boy Scouts cleaned up any trash that was found and pulled weeds from the towering staircase that leads to a picture perfect view of the city of Ginowan.

U.S. Marine Corps Col. Henry Dolberry Jr., the commanding officer of Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, said he could not be more proud to be a part of the Ginowan family and to help out the city. Recently, MCAS Futenma Marines also assisted in beautifying Ginowan Beach.

“We are always going to assist in any way possible to make our partnership stronger,” said Dolberry. “We are constantly trying to figure out ways to do more stuff like this in a COVID-19 environment and we will do many more events with the city of Ginowan in the future.”

The Marine Corps regularly participates in community relations events throughout Okinawan communities ranging from English camps to beach cleanups.

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