|Story & photo by Geneve N. Mankel, Public Affairs
A Fort McCoy volunteer was recognized in the 2011 Army Recreation Awards
competition in the Friend of Recreation (volunteer) category.
Lt. Col. Rich Harvey (left), Fort McCoy garrison deputy
commander, and 1st Sgt. Justin Maloney (right), Headquarters and
Headquarters Company, U.S. Army Garrison recognize Francis
“Fritz” Downs during a Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare
and Recreation awards ceremony for winning an award in the 2011
Army Recreation Awards competition in the Friend of Recreation
Francis “Fritz” Downs, a volunteer at the Directorate of Family and
Morale, Welfare and Recreation (DFMWR) Automotive Skills Center, was
nominated for his commitment, knowledge and customer-service skills.
Downs was awarded a trophy and certificate at a July 19 DFMWR awards
Downs said he began volunteering after retiring because it was something
to do to keep himself busy.
Downs has extensive knowledge about older vehicles and brakes, and does
everything possible to help customers with their auto maintenance/repair
needs, said Sheila Peterson, Community Activity Center manager. He has
improved the quality of service offered at the Automotive Skills Center
by providing excellent customer service to the Fort McCoy community.
He teaches customers how to operate equipment and ensures that all
Automotive Skills Center safety procedures are known and followed.
With his help, customers have been able to save hundreds of dollars on
auto repair costs, Peterson said.
Downs also has helped the Automotive Skills Center conduct tool
inventories and reduce the loss of tools.
Downs has volunteered nearly 40 hours per week in the last several
years. In 2010 he was awarded a Presidential Call to Service Lifetime
Award for volunteering more than 4,000 hours over his lifetime.
This award demonstrates that Fort McCoy has quality people who
selflessly give of themselves to help other people, specifically
Soldiers and their Families, said Jeffrey Uhlig, Community Recreation
Downs, the IMCOM Central nominee, was among seven others who won the
Friend of Recreation award.