By Michelle Gigante, U.S. Transportation Command Public Affairs

Airman’s volunteer efforts represent ‘Service Before Self,’ nets governor recognition

A Fort Meade Airman with the Department of Defense (DOD) Defense Courier Division (DCD), a unit aligned under the U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM) at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, was  recognized recently by the Maryland governor’s office for his efforts lending a helping hand to his local community.

With approximately 3,000 volunteer hours at various organizations in Annapolis, Maryland,
U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Zachery Deuyour, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, received the 2020 Veteran Honoree award during Maryland’s 37th Annual Governor’s Service Awards Recognition Ceremony Nov. 19, 2020, organized by the Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism.

Deuyour was among 18 honorees who were recognized in categories including Pandemic Response Champion, Lifetime Achievement, Emerging Leader, AmeriCorps Alum, Faith-Based, First Responder, Government Agency, Group, Individual, National Service, Nonprofit Volunteer Program, Small Business, Veteran, and Youth. Recipients of the Governor’s Service Awards were selected based on their volunteer time from June 2019 to August 2020.

Governor Larry Hogan thanked the 18 groups and individuals for leading their communities through service. “We are so proud of the selfless service and volunteerism displayed by Maryland citizens, young and old, all across our state,” said Hogan. “On behalf of the people of Maryland, I want to express my sincere appreciation and heartfelt congratulations to all of our incredible honorees.”

Deuyour’s volunteer commitment to meeting Maryland’s pressing human and environmental needs impacted more than 1,500 people. He was one of the first crisis counselors to join a text-based counseling service. Furthermore, he invested his time and leadership at another organization to provide career and life-changing tools to military members and their families, with a DOD mentoring team and self-paced professional development program. Deuyour continues to lift the spirits of those he supports, whether it is welcoming visitors or easing someone’s journey with a cup of coffee or providing homemade meals at yet another non-profit.

“Personally, I believe each of us was born with a purpose,” said Deuyour. “With my purpose, I believe I was put here to serve.”

Aside from volunteering, Deuyour is assigned to the DCD, where he is entrusted to store, prepare, and transport vital, classified and sensitive material for the United States and its allies. The DCD has stations all around the world, but the busiest and most populated station is located at Fort Meade.

Deuyour stated the entire focus at DCD is that the mission succeeds. “The biggest thing [we want people to know] is just that we’re here,” said Deuyour.

In the same way, Deuyour continues to focus on mission success in giving his extra time during off-duty hours to his local community of Maryland and to the Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen within the DCD stations.

“Staff Sgt. Deuyour is an incredibly dedicated and hard worker – whether it is stepping up to help lead or picking up a closing shift last minute, he represents the true definition of what volunteering means,” said Brittany Freshwater, Deuyour’s supervisor at Fort Meade and at the Baltimore Military Entrance Processing Station.

Since October 2018, Deuyour has been stationed at Fort Meade and has completed two deployments. Deuyour has been awarded various military awards, such as Service Member of the Quarter for USTRANSCOM, Service Member of the Year for the DCD, DOD Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal with Bronze Service Star, and a nomination for the U.S. Air Force Lance P. Sijan Leadership Award.
“In uniform or out of uniform, I do my best to live the Air Force core value of ‘service before self’ and I encourage each of my fellow wingmen in the service and people of Maryland to serve in their own way,” said Deuyour. “Together, we lead, together we can and will usher our community and thus the world into a better place daily.”