Capt. Lindsay Fletcher is one of more than 200 members of the Air Force coming to Beckley.
Fletcher, an Air National Guardsman and special education teacher from Philadelphia, arrived early because she is in charge of processing the arrivals of other service members.
Fletcher is one of 375 service members staying in the dorms at the University of Charleston's Beckley campus. The others are staying farther away, in Glen Jean and Summersville, and many of them are staying in tents or on cots in a gymnasium.
For the University of Charleston it's a positive experience in two ways, said Jerry Forster, president of the Beckley campus.
"We partner with the Guard in every way we can, mainly academic programs," Forster said. "So it's a partnership, plus it's an economic boost to our campus in July, when it's normally very quiet."
Fletcher, whose National Guard unit is based in Martinsburg, is familiar with West Virginia, but many others are not.
Spc. Clarice Canaii and Pfc. Maria Irizarry of the Army National Guard came from St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, to help out with the Jamboree.
West Virginia might be considered almost heaven, but Canaii, who has been here for a week, is ready to head back to the tropics.
"It's paradise," she said.
Reach David Gutman at david.gut...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5119.