• SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Capt. Troy Cline, S-3 shop, chief of operations, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, introduces his 2-month-old son, Luke Cline, to Sgt. 1st Class Paul Patterson, S-2 shop, vulnerability noncommissioned officer, HHD, 728th MP Bn., 8th MP Bde., and Patterson's 4-year-old daughter, Janiya Patterson,  during Military Family Appreciation Day  held by 728th MP Bn. in celebration of the battalion's Military Families at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20.  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Capt. Troy Cline, S-3 shop, chief of operations, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, introduces his 2-month-old son, Luke Cline, to Sgt. 1st Class Paul...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Cannon Dinger, age 7, son of Capt. Brandon Dinger, commander, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, takes a moment for a photo op with McGruff, the crime dog, during the 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day held at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20, to celebrate the battalion's Military Families .  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Cannon Dinger, age 7, son of Capt. Brandon Dinger, commander, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, takes a moment for a photo op with McGruff, the crime...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Maurcellus Smith, age 3, son of Master Sgt. Jamila Smith, battalion S-2 Shop noncommissioned officer in charge, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, performs pushups while Sgt. Guipps Laguerre, supply sergeant, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th MP Bn., 8th MP Bde. counts and keeps score during a physical training challenge held to familiarize the battalion's Military Families, in a fun way,  the daily physical training that their loved ones perform each morning.  The 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day was held at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20, to celebrate the battalion's Military Families.  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Maurcellus Smith, age 3, son of Master Sgt. Jamila Smith, battalion S-2 Shop noncommissioned officer in charge, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, performs pushups while Sgt. Guipps Laguerre...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Janiya Patterson, age 4, daughter of Sgt. 1st Class Paul Patterson, S-2 shop, vulnerability noncommissioned officer, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, buckles up and checks out the inside of an up armored high mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicle (Humvee) during the 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day held at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20, to celebrate the battalion's Military Families .  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Janiya Patterson, age 4, daughter of Sgt. 1st Class Paul Patterson, S-2 shop, vulnerability noncommissioned officer, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Capt. Dan Groller, commander, 58th Military Police Company, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, shows his father-in-law , Ernest Artt, an M203 grenade launcher attached to an M4 carbine rifle and explains the weapon's capabilities during the 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day held at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20, to celebrate the battalion's Military Families .  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Capt. Dan Groller, commander, 58th Military Police Company, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, shows his father-in-law , Ernest Artt, an M203 grenade launcher attached to an M4 carbine rifle and...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Wesley Williams, age 2, son of Sgt. Remington Williams, communications noncommissioned officer in charge, 58th Military Police Company, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, pauses for a photo op while children in the background continue playing in a spiderman bounce house at the 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Wesley Williams, age 2, son of Sgt. Remington Williams, communications noncommissioned officer in charge, 58th Military Police Company, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, pauses for a photo op...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Sgt. Remington Williams, communications noncommissioned officer in charge, 58th Military Police Company, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, watches while his son, Wesley Williams, age 2, checks out the inside of heavy expanded mobility tactical truck (HEMTT) during 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day held at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20, to celebrate the battalion's Military Families.  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Sgt. Remington Williams, communications noncommissioned officer in charge, 58th Military Police Company, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, watches while his son, Wesley Williams, age 2, checks...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Colbie Coomes, age 2, and her father, Staff Sgt. Timothy Coomes, operations noncommissioned officer, 13th Military Police Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, pet a SCHA military working dog from the 520th Military Working Dog Detachment, 728th MP Bn., while Staff Sgt. Elizabeth Davis, 520th MWD Det., 728th MP Bn. explains the duties and capabilities of military working dogs during the 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day held at Schofield Barracks, Nov. 20, to celebrate the battalion's Military Families .  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Colbie Coomes, age 2, and her father, Staff Sgt. Timothy Coomes, operations noncommissioned officer, 13th Military Police Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, pet a SCHA military working...

  • SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Military Families from throughout the 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, participate in a physical training challenge during the 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day held Nov. 20,  at Schofield Barracks to celebrate the battalion's Military Families. Integrated into the celebration were static displays of military vehicles and equipment as well as a physical training challenge all done in a fun way to familiarize the battalion's Military Families with their Soldiers experiences, equipment, and responsibilities.  (Photo by Staff Sgt. Richard Sherba, 8th Military Police Brigade Public Affairs, 8th Theater Sustainment Command)

    Warfighters celebrate Military Families

    SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Military Families from throughout the 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, participate in a physical training challenge during the 728th MP Bn.'s Military Family Appreciation Day held Nov. 20, at...

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii -- "Throughout our Nation's history, an unbroken chain of patriots has strengthened us in times of peace and defended us in times of war. Yet the courageous men and women of the United States military do not serve alone. Standing alongside them are husbands and wives, parents and children, sisters and brothers. During Military Family Month, we celebrate the families who make daily sacrifices to keep our Nation whole, and we remember a most sacred obligation - to serve them as well as they serve us," President Barack Obama, from his Presidential Proclamation proclaiming November 2013 as Military Family Month.

This annual Presidential Proclamation marks a month-long celebration of the Military Family and recognizes the commitment and sacrifices Military Families make. The 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command spent Nov. 20, here, celebrating the battalion's Military Families.

"It's really nice when units echo the intent of our commander-in-chief's [Presidential Proclamation]; taking his words and putting them into action. To actually set aside an afternoon and break away from all the commitments is really awesome," said Tiajuana Morgan, wife of Chief Warrant Officer 3 Archie Morgan, Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment, 728th MP Bn., 8th MP Bde. "It's amazing when a unit echoes that intent; it lets you know that this [728th MP Bn.] is a unit and command that truly cares about Military Families."

Lt. Col. Theresa Farrell, battalion commander, 728th MP Bn., 8th MP Bde., knows all too well the importance of the Military Family and the roles they play in support of their Soldiers and to the mission, for having grown up in a Military Family herself.

"My father was in the Army for 22 years and I saw how important it was that us five kids and my mother supported him, and how he was able to do his job because we were there for him," said Farrell.

"It's important that we open up the doors to families and include them so they don't feel like it's a family and a Soldier but rather one Military Family," continued Farrell. "As we've gone through over ten years of conflicts, it's the spouses and the family members that keep our Soldiers serving and it's the spouses and family members that really give our Soldiers the support they need."

The afternoon was filled with music, activities for children, cotton candy, popcorn, raffles and prizes; all typical of what one would expect at a large scale celebration, however there was an atypical theme to the celebration that provided a unique experience for the battalion's Military Families.

Integrated into the festivities were static displays of military vehicles and equipment as well as a physical training challenge all done in a fun way to familiarize the battalion's Military Families with their Soldiers experiences, equipment, and responsibilities.

"Sometimes my son asks me while were driving in the car, 'hey mom, do you drive that vehicle right there, what does it do?'," said Master Sgt. Jamila Smith, battalion S-2 Shop noncommissioned officer in charge, 728th MP Bn., 8th MP Bde. "So by bringing out the different vehicles and equipment, and by giving our families the physical training challenge, it brings our families and our children into our world for a little while."

Smith added, "it gives them that actually realization of what mom or dad does, that these are the things that mom or dad use to make the mission possible; and when we get up every morning and go to PT these are some of things that we do. So, that was the intent behind it. It felt really good to see a lot of families out there smiling, asking questions and engaging Soldiers in conversation on the capabilities of the equipment and what the Soldiers do."

After the celebration came to an end, Stephanie Cross, wife of Command Sgt. Maj. Bradley Cross, battalion command sergeant major, 728th MP Bn., 8th MP Bde., reflected on the event and Military Families.

"It takes a very resilient set of people to be able to do what the Military Family does. Especially the children, having to move schools so often. However, as tough as it may be to say goodbye to their friends I think the outcome is positive; they're learning life skills and these are skills they can put in their tool box that will make them successful later in life. For every hard day I think there are five great days," said Stephanie Cross.

She then reflected on her Military Family. Stephanie Cross and her husband, Command Sgt. Maj. Cross, have two children and one grandchild, and will be celebrating their 25th Wedding Anniversary in December.

"The military is a wonderful place to connect and raise a family. We've enjoyed our years. I always say whenever we're going anywhere that we are an Army Family. I honestly feel like we're all enlisted, if that makes sense, I know we don't do the work that my husband does but we do make the sacrifice," said Stephanie Cross. "We are very grateful for this life, it's been wonderful to us and we look forward to serving in any capacity that we can for as long as we are able."

With all those years of experience raising a Military Family does she have any advice for young Military Families?

Concerning deployments she said, "you know going into it that eventually that day will come, but that day is always difficult. There is always that uncertainty if they are going to come back, but you do the best you can to be both mom and dad while they are away. You can't replace them but you can fill their shoes temporarily while they are away doing their job for our country."

She concluded, "focus on the positive, the most important thing you can do is find the good. Be strong, it's okay to be yourself, it's okay to be an individual. But, when it comes to your Army Family your role is very important and it takes an entire family to be resilient."

Page last updated Fri November 29th, 2013 at 00:00