FORT EUSTIS, Va. (May 7, 2009) -- By Michelle Barbosa

If a military spouse should be recognized for anything, it should be my mom. She is the definition of "Super mom." Prior to my father's recent arrival from a 15-month term in Iraq, she dealt with more than anyone can imagine.

With her husband away, she worked as a Raytheon Government contractor tech that required her to work graveyard shifts ranging from 12 to 14 hours.

She would get less than four hours of sleep and then pick me and my sister up from our after-school activities, which is where her new day began. She was then committed as an active member to the Family Readiness Group and Spouses Club of Fort Eustis. I know of no one who was there more than she was. She dealt and listened to everyone's problems and always made them priority to her own, being the mediator in almost every situation.

Oh no, I'm still not done. While I was doing all this, as if it wasn't enough, she was studying to get her docterate degree online at the University of Maryland.

Oh, and did I mention she would cook and clean also' Don't forget grocery shopping, and everything a normal mom is required to do. But, on top of that, she was a military wife, so while missing her husband, with the constant fear he's in danger, she had to stay strong and protect the homefront, while supporting my father.

Yet, even with all that on her plate, she was always in a good mood, smiling bigger than everyone else. I look up to her in ways I can't explain. She is my hero, and I am forever indebted to her for her selflessness when everyone needed it the most. She's a great jokester for a mom and I love her so much. I love you!

(Michelle Barbosa is the daughter of Col. Mark Barbosa and Charlae Barbosa.)

By Marey Payge Tucker

My mom is a very amazing person. She has the strength to carry the weight of the world on her shoulders and not even break a sweat. She has the willingness to help anybody and everybody and she puts her all into it. She managed to not only get herself and her family through my dad's deployment, but other families through deployments. My mom has a very admirable sense of leadership that anyone would be lucky to possess, and I hope one day to have the strength she has. My mom is everything I hope to be and more.

By Erin Tucker

My mom is probably the best mom out there. She is extremely supportive of everything. While my dad was in Kuwait, my mom was always there for not only myself and my sister, but for other families who had loved ones in Kuwait. My mom always made sure that everyone had what they needed, and she still does to this day. She is a great person who loves to be there for everyone when they need help. She helps guide people to better things in life. My mom wants the best for everyone, and if she can, she's there to help whoever it is to accomplish amazing things. My mom is just a great person, inside and out, and I love her with all my heart.

(Marey Payge and Erin Tucker are the daughters of Sgt. 1st Class Ed Tucker and Lyna Tucker.)

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