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Appreciating Military Families: Who They Are and Where They Are


Many kinds of military families make up the military community, and they are located at installations and communities all around the world. Today's military family includes all of the loved ones of those who serve, have served or died while on active duty - spouses, children, parents, partners and others. They are part of military installations and civilian communities. They are in your churches, schools, hospitals and parks. November is Military Family Month, when we acknowledge our collective responsibility to honor and support the family members of military personnel, who also serve.

A wide variety of families make up the military community. A military family might be a single person, a married couple, a couple with children, a single parent with children, a retired couple with or without adult children; the combinations are numerous. Regardless of the type of family, military families provide our troops with invaluable encouragement and love and endure the challenges of military life selflessly and patriotically. They face the dangers of combat and separation during holidays and life milestones with courage and poise. They also serve as a beacon of hope for those who have been wounded in service, sharing their strength on their journey to recovery.

Just as the family makeup can be vastly different, military members and their families can be stationed in all kinds of locations. A very unique and remote duty-station is Naval Support Facility Diego Garcia, The Navy and Air Force serve at this station located on a footprint-shaped coral atoll close to the equator in the British Indian Ocean Territory. The remoteness of this duty station makes it an ideal place for tracking satellites and it is one of five GPS monitoring stations. Diego Garcia is one of the smaller duty stations; from end to end this atoll is 34 miles long, but the total area is only 11 square miles.

In contrast, Fort Hood in Texas is one of the largest and least remote military installations. It is 340 square miles and the only post in the United States capable of training and stationing two armored divisions. This Army post and is home to nearly 18,000 military family members.

No matter the size or location of the military family, it is important to consider the shared sacrifices of all of them. Join with them in thanks for one another and celebration of our exceptional military community.


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