Our team has enjoyed visiting many of the communities across the state. While the geography and demographics greatly vary from place to place, the patriotic spirit felt in each community is undeniable. We feel blessed to live in this wonderful place where people remain committed to support the beliefs and values upon which this country was founded. Utah cities and towns have rallied around their military service members and their families during tough deployments, and these efforts have not gone unrecognized. We thank you for your support of our military and welcome your participation in the Community Covenant Program.

I could never walk into a Utah City or Town and encourage the city to support our troops because the support is already there at an incredibly high level. The Community Covenant Program is simply a formal vehicle a community can use to show their support.

At a recent trip to Utah's Hogle Zoo I was on the front row with my family during a neat bird show. At the end of the show a bald eagle was brought out for display and an American Flag was draped on the wall behind it. My heart rate soared as I witnessed the scene in front of me. As an enthusiast photographer I immediately saw a special photo opportunity. When the show ended, I quickly moved myself into position to snap a few shots of the eagle with the flag in the background. The resulting image continues to inspire me. The focused gaze in the eagle's eyes reminds me of the determination of the soldiers with whom I serve.

Each of us is proud to serve this country and the state of Utah. Our missions are often dangerous and include long separations from loved ones. It is comforting to know that our Utah communities are there supporting us and our families during these trying times. I believe I speak for all of Utah's military service members and families in expressing gratitude for the continued support of our political leaders across the state. I believe the Community Covenant Program can effectively assist our communities in channeling this support to effectively benefit our military families.

Thanks again for your substantiated efforts.

Captain Seegmiller is the Officer in Charge of the Utah Community Covenant Team