Pride of the Pine Belt: S.O.S. Squad

© S.O.S. Squad
© S.O.S. Squad

LAUREL, MS (WDAM) - More than thirty young people in the Jones County area comprise the S.O.S. Squad. Not only does the organization stand for Serving our Seniors, it also means to Serve our Savior.

The group is focused on meeting their spiritual desire to help senior citizens. Mallory McArthur of Laurel co-founded the S.O.S. Squad earlier this year.

"And it was just a lot of friends that wanted to get together, go do something to make a difference and have fun at the same time. So the first project was in January and we've done thirty since then," explained McArthur.

Projects have included things like installing smoke alarms and lots of lawn maintenance work throughout the Laurel and Ellisville area on weekends. Harrison Tew teamed up with McArthur to get the S.O.S. Squad operational.

Tew said, "I've enjoyed the fellowship and just getting to be able to work for other people."

Group members include young people in middle and high school in addition to those in college. They chose to focus their efforts on the elderly because they thought older people are under served.

According to McArthur, "We just thought seniors have a lot of financial burdens and they are often overlooked and they don't always have family that can help them and so we thought that would be a good outlet for us to choose for our community service."

One of the first senior citizens the S.O.S. Squad helped was Amy Busby, a Laurel resident. She had broken her wrist and was unable to care for her yard.

"They trimmed probably twenty or twenty five different crape myrtles. They trimmed other bushes, they moved railroad ties. They put pine straw out," said Busby.

Busby went on to explain, "You think about young people, you know sometime you think you hear all of these bad reports. But when you see children serving God you are so blessed."

And while the S.O.S. Squad has made lots of progress in the Jones County area, they hope it's work inspires others to roll up their sleeves and help out those in need.

If you are interested in the S.O.S. Squad as a potential member or if you are a senior citizen in need of assistance, please e-mail the organization at

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