A legacy established by former Defense Secretary Casper Weinberger in 1986, the Month of the Military Child is observed every April.
According to the U.S Department of Defense Education Activity website, April is a time to applaud military Families and children for their daily sacrifices and the challenges they overcome while supporting their Service member.
The going can be tough for military Families, but military children benefit from their experiences.
“They learn resiliency, they learn how to go through tough times,” said Lt. Col. Marcus Wright, commander, 1st Battalion, 501 Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. “It will benefit them later on in life.”
Leadership and Family Readiness Group members from 1st Bn., 501 PIR, came together Friday to celebrate their Families and children with a Spring Fling belated Easter event.
The day began with a Family Army Physical Fitness Test.
“They ran a little under a mile, and most of the children ran it or attempted to run it,” Wright said.
After Families and Soldiers recovered from the APFT, they met to barbecue, learn about the military equipment their Soldiers use and participate in a practical work in the aircraft training. When the children completed the PWAC demonstration, the performed simulated parachute landing falls directly into a field full of colorful eggs.
It was a valuable learning experience for many of the Families and particularly for the children being celebrated.
For Shelby Burris, a Fort Bragg Family member, watching her daughter learn about what daddy does is important.
“The kids don’t really know what they’re (Soldiers are) going off to work to do; she gets to realize that is what gun her daddy uses, and this is what a DAGOR (military vehicle) is,” Burris said.
Even though growing up in the military can be tough, attendees agreed that the experiences and benefits for Military Families are unrivaled.
“I love it because of the togetherness of Families because we don’t get to see our biological Families,” said Burris. “I love the community. I love the schools.”