2-14 Infantry hosts combat spouse day
October 6, 2011
FORT DRUM, N.Y., Oct. 6, 2011 -- The 2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment "Golden Dragons" hosted Combat Spouse Day on Sept. 23 to build camaraderie and esprit de corps among Soldiers and families. It was a fun-filled day of "swapping roles" between Soldiers and their spouses.
The 88 spouse participants began the day with in-processing at 2-14 Infantry headquarters. The spouses got a small taste of their Soldiers' daily lives when they moved on to events like an M-4 carbine and M-9 pistol shoot; a confidence course trial; a lunch of meals, ready-to-eat; and an interactive night vision walk.
Soldiers also experienced "a day in the life" as caretaker while their civilian spouses were "training," but with kid-friendly events like face painting and a bouncy castle, that task was no sweat.
The highlight of the day for most spouses was the M-4/M-9 shoot. Spouses received proper safety briefings and blank fire iterations before firing live M-4s and M-9s. The award for Top Shooter went to Jayne Bernabe.
All participants were taken to the confidence course and negotiated obstacles such as the "swing stop and jump," the "low wire crawl," "the swinger" and "the climb and jump," to name a few.
"Junior Dragons" remained at 2-14 Infantry headquarters, where they were entertained by Soldiers of Headquarters, C and D companies, as well as E Company of 210 Brigade Support Battalion. These companies hosted a combat equipment display, giving spouses and children a chance to view equipment their Soldiers use on a daily basis.
The day finished with a battalion awards ceremony where each participant was recognized as a proven "Combat Spouse" by Lt. Col. Sean Bernabe, 2-14 Infantry commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. Carl Ashmead, senior enlisted adviser. The coveted title of Combat Spouse was earned through both personal courage and group cohesion.
Bernabe's intent of building unit morale and strengthening families was achieved and confirmed.
After the day came to a close, spouse Krista Flickinger said it was a great way for newcomers to meet others in the unit. This sentiment was echoed by commanders calling the day an overwhelming success.