JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. – Joint Base Lewis-McChord leaders will recognize individuals whose selfless service has supported the JBLM community by inducting two distinguished volunteers into its Civilian Hall of Fame in a ceremony to take place Monday, May 23 at 11:30 a.m., at the American Lake Community Center on JBLM-Lewis North.
Janice Buckley will be recognized for founding and managing the non-profit organization “Heartbeat—Serving Wounded Warriors” in 2009. Under her leadership, Heartbeat helps thousands of military service members gain control over their health challenges to lead productive lives. Her passion for military support started shortly after September 11, 2001, and in 2004 Buckley founded the Washington Chapter of the national organization, Operation Homefront (OHWA). By 2008, OHWA had served 29,000 families with financial or other assistance and averaged more than $500,000 in donations annually. In 2009, OHWA left the national organization and changed its name to Heartbeat—Serving Wounded Warriors. Through Heartbeat, Buckley provides emergency assistance, morale building activities and therapeutic services to many units on Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Heartbeat averages more than $600,000 in donations each year. Her contributions range from personally caring for wounded warriors to providing holiday dinners, to donating clothing and travel expenses. Buckley was nominated by the 555th Engineer Brigade and the Warrior Transition Battalion.
Command Sergeant Major (Ret.) Herbert C. Schmeling retired in February 2001 after 30 years of active duty service in the United States Army. His volunteer work started soon after retirement with a small act of kindness—trimming overgrown shrubbery at JBLM’s Fisher House—and it continues today with devoted service to Soldiers and their families. Schmeling volunteers full-time with many organizations to include the USO, Support America’s Armed Forces, Association of the United States Army(AUSA), the Sergeants Major Association and Fisher House. As a Volunteer with the USO, he has personally bid farewell to more than 40,000 service members as they deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan and welcomed thousands home. He is a regular contributor to the JBLM Empowerment Fairs, Deployed Family Dinners, Retiree Appreciation Day, and Surviving Family Appreciation Day and other JBLM unit events. Mr. Schmeling’s volunteerism also impacts military life in the Puget Sound region. It is estimated that since his retirement, Schmeling has helped collect and distribute more than $1 million worth of monetary and in-kind donations and service support to service members, their families, veterans, retirees, and military support programs. Schmeling was nominated by the 201st Battlefield Surveillance Brigade.
The Civilian Hall of Fame was created to permanently recognize and thank men and women in the communities around Joint Base Lewis-McChord who work to benefit service members, their families, our installation, and the armed forces.
Nominees are selected by senior I Corps and installation officers, and may include business leaders, heads of civic organizations, local government leaders, or any individuals who have shown great support for Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Honorees are selected for their outstanding contributions and service throughout the community. With the addition of these inductees, 17 members of the civilian community have been added to the Civilian Hall of Fame honor roll.