A WLBT Report
JACKSON – Fifty Mississippi State Troopers are headed to New Jersey Sunday night to assist in recovery efforts from Hurricane Sandy, following a request for additional manpower from that state’s governor, Chris Christie, WLBT reported.
Many of the highway patrolmen know all to well the issues a disaster can create. However, they believe Hurricane Katrina and additional training has prepared them for the mission.
Fifty members of the Mississippi Highway Patrol's special operations group pose for a picture before making a 15 hour drive to New Jersey. They'll assist law enforcement there with recovery efforts and the devastation Superstorm Sandy left behind.
“There's a lot of states and a lot of these agencies have helped us in the times whenever our families had nowhere to turn to, and other law enforcement came and assisted us. We are forever thankful and are thankful to have the opportunity to go up there and return some of the favors on behalf of our state,” said Marty Davis, MHP Master Sgt.
“Being there for them and their families and whatever their needs, and just doing a great job for the great state of Mississippi,” added Derrick Beckom, MHP Trooper 1st Class.
The SOG Team hasn't been given their official orders yet.
After Hurricane Katrina, tornadoes, and devastating floods have hit Mississippi, many of these troopers know first hand exactly how a disaster can affect a state.
The experience with those emergencies has given the troopers insight on the work they'll be doing.
“It prevents looting. It protects the public from roadway closures and hazards that my exist, and also to aid in getting the logistical supplies back in and help to the people where they may be cut off at,” add Master Sgt. Davis.
These highway patrolmen say they're happy to help Sandy victims. They'll also be taking pressure off emergency responders in New Jersey, who've been working almost non-stop since the storm hit. As troopers begin their journey on the highway, loaded with supplies, they realize their own family is making a sacrifice.
“I had to see my little daughter cry this morning, my wife as well, my son, but he's going to take care of things, my oldest son. So, a little tough, but being in the military, having to experience that before and they understand what my job calls for. And we're just looking at it as a chance to bless other people right now,” Trooper 1st Class Beckom explained.
“When other people have needs and they are in a bind and I'm not, I should give of myself and give my family to give to others. And I'm blessed to be in a position to be able to do that sir,” Master Sgt. Davis said.
The SOG Team will be in New Jersey for at least 15 days.