Yokota celebrates new Kindergarten building
YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- A ribbon cutting ceremony marked the opening of a new annex to the Kindergarten School at Yokota Air Base, Japan, Dec. 12, 2014.
Col. Douglas DeLaMater, 374th Airlift Wing commander, gave opening remarks before helping cut the ceremonial ribbon with Mrs. Hattie Phipps, Joan K. Mendel Elementary School principal, and other base leadership.
"I just got back from Operation Christmas Drop and one of the most significant items we had in those bundles were school books," DeLaMater said. "The reason why that was significant and struck chords with so many people is because it's about the education and the future of our children. This facility will be able to support many different programs in a world-class manner."
Following the ribbon cutting, the crowd was treated to a vocal performance from the Joan K. Mendel Elementary School Chorus, and then invited to tour the new building that will help shape the minds of Yokota's youth.
For Principal Phipps, this was a poignant moment as she was in constant collaboration with the architecture firm from the start.
"This building is showing our boys and girls what their possibilities are for future growth," Phipps said. "Right from the very beginning it's been a fantastic experience for our Kindergarten staff and myself as an administrator to be a part of this. I'm just really overjoyed. It's been an awesome experience."