2017-05-19 / Front Page

HONORING MILITARY SPOUSES

Military spouses recognized for sacrifice
BY LAURA LEVERING
Fort Gordon Public Affairs Office


Maj. Gen. John B. Morrison Jr., Fort Gordon’s commanding general, puts his gratitude into words May 12, speaking to honorees at the annual Military Spouse Appreciation Day event held at the U.S. Army Reserve Center. 
PHOTO BY BILL BENGTSON / FORT GORDON PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE Maj. Gen. John B. Morrison Jr., Fort Gordon’s commanding general, puts his gratitude into words May 12, speaking to honorees at the annual Military Spouse Appreciation Day event held at the U.S. Army Reserve Center. PHOTO BY BILL BENGTSON / FORT GORDON PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE They serve in their service member’s shadow; their service and sacrifices often overlooked. For at least one day out of the year, they’re publicly recognized and showered with thanks.

Fort Gordon honored military spouses on May 12, Military Spouse Appreciation Day, at the U.S. Army Reserve Center. The observance dates back to 1984, when President Ronald Reagan designated the Friday before Mother’s Day of each year to be Military Spouse Appreciation Day.

“Military Spouse Appreciation Day is only one day out of the year, but we really want them to know that they’re appreciated for what they do every day,” said Bernadette White, mobilization and deployment specialist, Army Community Service.


Military wife Anna Klink, right, shares some ideas with Perfectly Posh representative Candie Kay May 12 during the Military Spouse Appreciation Day event held at the U.S. Army Reserve Center. 
PHOTO BY BILL BENGTSON / FORT GORDON PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE Military wife Anna Klink, right, shares some ideas with Perfectly Posh representative Candie Kay May 12 during the Military Spouse Appreciation Day event held at the U.S. Army Reserve Center. PHOTO BY BILL BENGTSON / FORT GORDON PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE Spouses were treated to refreshments, an afternoon of pampering, giveaways and vendors sharing information about products and services. ACS provided space and tables for spouses who wanted to promote their business.

“The only stipulation was they weren’t allowed to sell, but they could promote to their heart’s content,” White said.

Maj. Gen. John B. Morrison Jr., U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence and Fort Gordon commanding general, expressed his gratitude to a crowd of spouses attending the event. He said that festivities surrounding Military Spouse Appreciation Day were a small token of appreciation symbolic of more than one day.

“It’s really appreciation for what you do each and every day, and the service and sacrifices that we – as Army families – put in each and every day whether we’re together or whether we’re separated,” Morrison said. “There is no way that our great Army or anybody could do what we do without the love and support of our spouses.”

The event came at the heels of a weeklong celebration that was filled with free activities for military spouses including firearms lessons, golf lessons, bowling, archery, painting, and cooking classes. Military Appreciation Week was made possible by the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, and several corporate sponsors.

Army spouses Echo Kambuku and Lana Napier attended together and agreed it felt nice being recognized on Military Appreciation Day.

“I don’t think people realize how much spouses do outside of the military,” Napier said. “We get overlooked a lot.”

White said one of the big sacrifices spouses make is having to relocate, which in turn means having to find new friends. She hopes events like Military Spouse Appreciation Day encourages spouses to reach out to one another more.

“I would urge spouses whenever there is an event, come out and meet other spouses,” White said. “Everybody needs to know that there is someone out there that they can reach out to, not just for bad times, but if you want to celebrate something, you’ve got a spouse out there who knows what you’re going through.”

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