By Mrs. Stacy M Rzepka (Army Medicine)April 15, 2010
Over 400 participants came together for Fort Campbell's first official Walk for Autism April 10 at the Division Parade Field. The walk, as well as other events held in April for National Autism Awareness Month, celebrated military Families who have Family members diagnosed with the disorder. Soldiers, Families and local community residents circled the parade field from 9 a.m. until noon to show their support and learn more about autism. Fort Campbell's Army Community Service (ACS) Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) partnered with Blanchfield Army Community Hospital's (BACH) EFMP and Educational and Developmental Intervention Services (EDIS) to host the event.
Santos Aquino, father of a teenager with autism, had nothing but good things to say about BACH's EFMP and the support his family has received at Fort Campbell since their arrival in 1997. "Everyone has been very supportive, even helping us with schools and finding resources in the community," said his wife, Joann Aquino.
Dr. Quentin Humberd, developmental pediatrician and chief of the EFMP at BACH, said the Walk for Autism not only raised awareness about the disorder, it also showed people with autism and their Families that their friends and neighbors support them. "Autism is such an important issue in America today, families are worried about it and they want to know the community is doing something to help," Humberd said.
Throughout National Autism Awareness Month, Fort Campbell raised over $7,000 through Walk for Autism T-shirt sales and charitable donations. The proceeds will be presented to the Autism Society of Middle-Tennessee.
For more information, please contact ACS EFMP at (270) 798-2727, BACH EFMP at (270) 956-0614 or BACH EDIS at (270) 798-8997.