'Better half' honored during Military Spouse Appreciation Day
May 15, 2009
- Military Spouse Appreciation Day
"Uncle Sam may not be a woman, but he'll still take your man."
Howard Butler, the U.S. Army Garrison's deputy commander, recites a family story that says his grandfather gave Butler's wife this warning not long after the couple was married.
Although times have changed a bit since Butler's grandfather passed on this wisdom (now men are just as likely to be military spouses as women), the challenges faced by military spouses, especially during times of war, remain consistent.
To show appreciation for the many hardships endured by the military spouses, members of the Fort McPherson community gathered in the Army Community Service center May 8 for one of many events planned to celebrate Military Spouse Appreciation Day.
"We don't take enough time to thank them (spouses)," Butler said during the presentation.
During the ceremony, spouses got to hear a poem dedicated to military spouses, read accounts of other spouses and mingle over refreshments. Spouses also received a framed copy of "Recipe for a Military Spouse" and a yellow rose.
Tina Helmick, Army Volunteer Corps program manager at ACS, who helped coordinate the event, said spouses need to be recognized because being an Army spouse is an important mission, not only to his or her children, but to the servicemember, as well.
Without a spouse's support and patience, the Soldier's career can be more difficult due to increased difficulties at home, Helmick added.
Helmick has been married to Sgt. 1st Class Bradley Helmick, a training and ammunition NCO for the Training and Support Branch of G7 at First Army, for 18 years. She said a spouse's missions include helping take care of issues at home, enduring separation and helping with processes, such as relocation.
Despite some hardships, Helmick said there are a lot of benefits to being a military spouse.
"I have gotten to experience different cultures, meet different people and form connections," she said.