Family reporting for duty

Salvation?Army leaders move in

WARREN — New Salvation Army Capts. Kiley, 38, and Christopher Williams, 45, promise to bring energy and their own special skills to their new position heading the Franklin Street Warren Salvation Army barracks.

The Williams come to Warren from a three-year assignment in New Castle, Pa., one of seven places they have lived, mostly in New England, with a great deal of enthusiasm.

“We jumped in. Our girls went to camp the week after we got here,” the Williamses said, speaking about the Cleveland district’s Salvation Army camp in Carrollton where two of their three daughters spent a week near the lake where there is swimming, zip-lining and archery.

The couple and daughters, Abby, 12, Sydney, 9 and Olivia, 4, have all grown and participated as junior church members.

“I grew up in it, my parents are Salvation Army,” Kiley Williams said.

The Salvation Army tradition of service and redemption might be one reason Kiley Williams laughs when relating that she met her husband “while doing service” at a NASCAR track.

“My officer introduced us when Christopher was doing ministry through another church,” she said.

Christopher Williams, a one-time chaplain, said he hopes his work with police and fire emergency crews can offer experience in his new position. He also said he knows his wife has much to offer.

“We work good together, not just because we are married, but because we have different skill-sets,” he said. “She is very good with programming for music. I am not musical, but I support her 100 percent.”

The couple said they believe figuring out what the community needs is the major focus of their work ahead and noted there are successful programs already in place, including the drop-in center which offers social support and programs to adults with mental challenges.

“Building up an understanding — that is one of the things I can do,” he said.

Christopher Williams said exposure in the community is important, also, and he said he is interested in the possibility of meeting and helping families in need.

He said he values the use of the Salvation Army’s emergency and transport vehicles which families-in-crisis need, whether on the scene at fires or other disasters. Also important is the fact the vehicles are used to transport the young Salvation Army soldiers to places like camp, he said. Despite the protests of their dad, his too-young-to-drive daughters look forward to the day when they can take a few vehicles for a spin.

“My kids like the buses,” he said, smiling at his daughters.