Commissioner, Department of Conservation & Recreation (DCR)
In early June 2011, soldiers from Unit 1173 DDSB (Deployment and Distribution Batallion), deployed from Brockton and arrived in Kuwait. Greeted with high temperatures, strong winds, and a sandstorm – which hindered the process of unloading their gear – the 187 men and women encountered a landscape as different as could be from their homes in New England.
Among them was DCR Island District Manager Susan M. Kane. For Kane the sand was nothing new. Back home, she spends her days outdoors along the New England coast, caring for rocky, often frigid, Boston harbor beaches, islands and coastal camping sites. This sand was hot, dry, and without a nearby coastline. The transition from the waterfront of Boston Harbor to the sandy desert of Kuwait challenged Kane and her unit.
Serving in the Army Reserves as a Major in Troop 1173 DDSB, Kane is responsible not only for the 187 other soldiers serving in her unit, but for shipment of military vessels, equipment and supplies back to the United States.
If you ask anyone at DCR, they will tell you Susan leads by example. At home, she is dedicated, strong-willed and a natural leader. I have no doubt that she currently exemplifies all of these characteristics in her new role abroad.
Admiration and support for Kane’s innate ability to provide leadership in both of these roles has garnered support from her co-workers at DCR visitors to the Boston Harbor Islands, and students at Hull High School. In an effort to support our troops overseas, particularly Troop #1173, the DCR partnered with local community groups this fall to gather needed supplies and funds to send care packages abroad.
Molly Kane, president of the student body at Hull High School, shares the same last name as Major Susan Kane, but they are strangers. However, it was the desire to help provide our soldiers with items that would remind them of home that inspired Molly to rally the entire high school into hosting a drive that ran from October early this fall until Veteran’s Day, November 11.
DCR was thrilled to support our troops and Molly Kane’s effort at Hull High School. DCR staff donated over 56 care packages in just under four weeks. As those of us at home prepare for the Thanksgiving Holiday, many of us at DCR will be thinking of Susan, her battalion, and our deployed neighbors, colleagues and family members. It is my hope that DCR’s efforts can help to provide at least a few of those serving with a thoughtful care package in time for Thanksgiving.