• Children at the YMCA’s Camp Abe Lincoln in Buffalo, Iowa, test their camouflage skills. Military family members whose parents are or will be deployed overseas spent a week bonding with their peers.  (U.S. Army photo by Dan Carlson)

    ASC’s chief of staff visits military kids at camp

    Children at the YMCA’s Camp Abe Lincoln in Buffalo, Iowa, test their camouflage skills. Military family members whose parents are or will be deployed overseas spent a week bonding with their peers. (U.S. Army photo by Dan Carlson)

  • Col. Richard Dix (2nd from right), Army Sustainment Command chief of staff, accepts a handmade American flag from military children at Camp Abe Lincoln, Buffalo, Iowa. Dix, accompanied by Sgt. Maj. Ron Brooks (left) and 1st Sgt. Eric Evans (right), spoke with several dozen military children. (U.S. Army photo by Dan Carlson)

    ASC’s chief of staff visits military kids at camp

    Col. Richard Dix (2nd from right), Army Sustainment Command chief of staff, accepts a handmade American flag from military children at Camp Abe Lincoln, Buffalo, Iowa. Dix, accompanied by Sgt. Maj. Ron Brooks (left) and 1st Sgt. Eric Evans (right)...

  • Curious campers examine an MRE - a packaged  military meal - in the hands of an Illinois Army National Guard Soldier. The hungry trio was among several dozen children at Camp Abe Lincoln, Buffalo, Iowa. (U.S. Army photo by Dan Carlson)

    ASC’s chief of staff visits military kids at camp

    Curious campers examine an MRE - a packaged military meal - in the hands of an Illinois Army National Guard Soldier. The hungry trio was among several dozen children at Camp Abe Lincoln, Buffalo, Iowa. (U.S. Army photo by Dan Carlson)

BUFFALO, Iowa - It’s no ordinary summer camp if children’s conversations are regularly punctuated by an exclamatory “Hooah!”

At the YMCA’s Camp Abe Lincoln, several dozen military family children bonded with their peers July 3-8.

At the invitation of camp organizers, Col. Richard Dix, Army Sustainment Command's chief of staff, spoke with campers. He pointed out that kids whose parents deploy overseas, especially to combat areas, bear a part of the burden of military service.

Dix stressed that families need a “battle buddy” to get them through the challenges of military life and encouraged the campers to help each other through difficult times.

Quoted in a Quad City Times report, Dix said, "Heroes are people who make sacrifices and give of themselves and ask for nothing in return. Each one of you who attend this camp is a hero in my eyes."

The campers showed their appreciation by presenting him with a hand-made painting of the United States flag.

Illinois Army National Guard Soldiers led campers through a variety of military field activities such as applying camouflage face paint and preparing military packaged meals, known as MREs.

Among the campers’ other activities were swimming, canoeing, horseback riding, tower climbing, hiking, singing and dancing.

Page last updated Fri July 8th, 2011 at 00:00