Long time Menifee resident, community supporter receives call to deploy to Afghanistan

On February 26, I was invited to attend a very special event which was held at the U.S. Bank in Sun City at 10 AM to honor Darci Castillejos who is being deployed to Bagram Army Air Base in Bagram, Afghanistan.

Mike Castillejos is the Sun City U.S. Bank Manager and the husband of Darci. Both were presented with iPads by U.S. Bank executives John Giddism, Karen Racusin, Chris Moulder and L. Brian Butler.

U.S. Bank has a fantastic Proud To Serve Program and currently U.S. Bank has approximately 2,000 employee veterans who work at U.S. Bank, including National Guard and Reserve Members, and have hired more than 1,100 veterans between 2012 and 2013.

Karen Racusin, senior vice president regional manager, is in charge of a program that hires military officers and fast tracks these individuals into branch manager


John Giddis, district manager, said “Supporting the U.S. Military vets is the right thing to do, and U.S. Bank is proud of the support that they have been able to do with their Proud To Serve program.”

Others present at the event were City of Menifee Councilman John Denver who also presented Darci with a gift from the City of Menifee, along with Linda Denver, Menifee Rotary president and treasurer of the Menifee Arts Council; Dorothy Wolons, CEO of the Menifee Valley Chamber of Commerce with her assistant Ebony Richards; and Shellie Stoval.

“Darci, the City of Menifee is very proud of you, everyone that knows you will miss you,” said Denver.

In 1994, Darci felt a desire to serve her country and enlisted in the United States Navy Reserve. In 2007, she was promoted to Chief Petty Officer, one of her proudest achievements. She is currently assigned to Navy Cargo Handling Battalion 14, Delta Company, as the senior enlisted leader for 31 sailors.

Darci has served as chairwoman (twice) of the Menifee Valley Chamber of Commerce; president of the Menifee Valley Community Cupboard; treasurer of the Menifee Action Group; and served on the General Plan Advisory Council. This past year Darci served as an ambassador for goodwill as Ms. Menifee Valley Chamber of Commerce.

This year Darci received the phone call reservists are always on the ready for, the call to active duty. On March 7, she will be deploying with 115 members of her battalion to provide logistics support to Special Operations Forces stationed at Bagram Army Air Base, in Bagram, Afghanistan.

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