Rising Six cleans up the road

Members of the Goodfellow Rising Six clean up a two-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 87 Saturday as part of the Texas Adopt-a-Highway program. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Randy Mallard).

Members of the Goodfellow Rising Six clean up a two-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 87 Saturday as part of the Texas Adopt-a-Highway program. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Randy Mallard).

GOODFELLOW AIR FORCE BASE, Texas -- Goodfellow's Rising Six sent out a task force of 19 people Saturday to champion its two-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 87 just south of San Angelo. Rising Six takes part in the state-operated Adopt-a-Highway program and makes a trek to the site once per quarter to pick up trash. The group was divided into two teams. Each team canvassed one mile of highway in each direction, to include the highway median, and amassed an estimated 150 pounds of refuse.

"We have different volunteers almost every time," said Senior Airman Anisa O'Dell, Rising Six member and the organizer of the event. "It is a good way for different people to get involved."

"I brought my whole family," said Tech. Sgt. Samantha Sigler, Rising Six vice president. She was accompanied by her husband and two children.

Everything from shredded car tires and lug nuts to beer cans and photographs comprised the day's findings. In the end, nearly twenty bags of trash were piled near the sign that designates the Rising Six's "turf" along the busy four-lane highway. The bags were to be hauled off later by Adopt-a-Highway coordinators.

"Adopt-a-Highway is a good way to give back to the community," said Tech. Sgt. Joy William, the president of Rising Six. "People on base use this highway frequently. It is important that the people of San Angelo know we care about the environment and that we want to help."

Organizations involved in the program sign a two-year contract to take responsibility for a two-mile stretch of road and agree to clean up litter there at least four times per year. The local Adopt-a-Highway coordinator provided logistical support for Saturday's clean up by supplying trash bags and safety vests.

According to the Texas Adopt-a-Highway Web site, the state was the first to organize an Adopt-a-Highway program when a Texas Department of Transportation engineer proposed the idea in 1984.

Far beyond the Adopt-a-Highway program, Rising Six offers numerous opportunities for community involvement.

"It is important for Airmen and junior NCOs to get involved both on and off base," Tech. Sgt. William said. "Rising Six is the perfect way to do that."

To get your organization involved in the Adopt-a-Highway program, go to the official Web site at www.dontmesswithtexas.org.

For more information on how you can get involved with Goodfellow's Rising Six, contact Tech. Sgt. Joy William at 654-5401 or Tech. Sgt. Samantha Sigler at 654-5465.