Harrison County

Keesler airmen take to the streets in Biloxi

Students from Keesler Air Force Base clean sand off the sidewalk along U.S. 90 in Biloxi on Friday, Sept. 9, 2016. The work by the volunteers was to help the city prepare for Cruisin’ The Coast, which runs from Oct. 2-9. The annual weeklong, Coastwide car event has has set a new record with 6,630 cars pre-registered for the event’s 20th anniversary year.
Students from Keesler Air Force Base clean sand off the sidewalk along U.S. 90 in Biloxi on Friday, Sept. 9, 2016. The work by the volunteers was to help the city prepare for Cruisin’ The Coast, which runs from Oct. 2-9. The annual weeklong, Coastwide car event has has set a new record with 6,630 cars pre-registered for the event’s 20th anniversary year. jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com

Biloxi city employees have been mowing grass and cleaning sand from along U.S. 90 for weeks, and on Friday, about 60 airmen from Keesler Air Force Base gave them a hand in tidying up the beachfront. The work was to help the city prepare for Cruisin’ The Coast, which runs Oct. 2-9. The annual weeklong, Coastwide car event has set a new record with 6,630 cars pre-registered for its 20th anniversary year.

Working in the midday heat, the volunteers attacked the sidewalks and medians with shovels and blowers to remove sand.

“You just can’t say enough about these young men and women who have given up their Friday afternoon, without an order, to work alongside our people in the hot sun on U.S. 90 medians,” Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich said.

Personnel from Biloxi Parks & Recreation and Public Works crews assisted the volunteers. The city provided gloves, shovels and water to the airmen, who were responding to a call for volunteers from Col. Michele Edmondson, commander of Keesler’s 81st Training Wing.

“This city and this base have enjoyed a long and productive relationship, and this one of the reasons,” Gilich said. “There’s a commitment and an appreciation that works both ways. You see it time and again.”

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