HONG KONG - Sailors from the amphibious transport dock USS Denver (LPD 9) and embarked Marines from the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (31st MEU) spent a morning painting a building for the non-profit organization Crossroads International.

Crossroads International is a Hong Kong based, non-profit organization serving global need. The organization offers numerous services including providing food, clothing and shelter to victims of natural disasters all over the world.

“My faith drives me to serve people in practical ways and this was an opportunity to do that and get to spend some time with my Sailors and Marines,” said Lt. Drew Jones, Denver’s chaplain.

The Sailors and Marines really enjoyed this opportunity to get out of the normal scene and do something to be able to help.

“I wanted to do something out of the ordinary, something other than the day-to-day routine,” said Sgt. Anthony Duplantis, from Vacaville, Calif.

Crossroads was founded more than 15 years ago and has relied upon the generosity and good will of their volunteers ever since.

“I was working in the European auto industry and one day I thought why I should be so privileged, when so many others are not as fortunate,” said Pablo Stevens, maintenance manager for Crossroads International. “This is just one way for us to try to fix what may be nothing more than an accident of birth.”

Volunteering with Crossroads International was one of a handful of activities Denver Sailors and Marines participated in.

They also volunteered their time with the Ronald McDonald House of Charity in Hong Kong, the only one in Asia.

The Sailors and Marines were thrilled to have the opportunity to work for such a worthy cause.

Denver is part of the Essex Amphibious Ready Group and is currently underway for a scheduled patrol in the Western Pacific.

For more news from Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, visit www.navy.mil/local/c7f/.