FORT HOOD, Texas - Chicago native, Spc. Alejandro Alvarez (left), a scout assigned to Troop C, 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, plays a card game with a sixth grade student at the Palo Alto Middle School in Killeen, Texas, June 3. The "Garryowen" Squadron adopted the Palo Alto Middle School students and visits them daily.

FORT HOOD, Texas - Soldiers from the 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, spent June 2-4 at the Palo Alto Middle School, in Killeen, Texas, to take part in the student's Field Day.

This event allows each grade a whole day to participate in a wide variety of activities with Soldiers from the "Garryowen" battalion.

"For as long as I can remember, these Soldiers have visited and helped our students mentally, educationally and physically, helping them relate to each other," said Killeen, Texas native, Matt Widacki, the Palo Alto Middle School principle. "The Soldiers are able to connect with the kids and comfort their concerns they don't feel comfortable approaching their teachers or parents about."

Most of the children who attend the Palo Alto Middle School have one or both parents stationed at Fort Hood, so they were comfortable working with these Soldiers which made the field day even more enjoyable, Widacki said.

The field day activities included friendly outdoor sports, such as basketball, football, and a moon bounce for children to jump in.

"The weather wasn't suitable to hold a field day outdoors on Thursday," said Chicago native, Spc. Alejandro Alvarez, a scout assigned to Troop C. "So we held it in the cafeteria."

When entering the front door of the Palo Alto Middle School, it was easy to hear the
excitement in the children's laughs.

Although plans for outdoor fun were slightly altered, the alternate plans were just as fun for the children, said Alvarez. The plans changed from basketball and moon bounces to card games and karaoke.

"Garryowen" troopers also supplied the school with a five Soldiers color guard for the opening ceremony.

"These Soldiers have helped our students succeed," said Widacki. "The children love them and it was great to see them support our school at the graduation. We can't wait to work with them again next year."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16