This is to raise community awareness and promote understanding and support for the challenges faced by families of service members separated from their loved ones by deployment or because they are recovering from injuries.
As an active duty soldier for nearly five years, I have been abroad three times, most recently to Afghanistan. My family moved to Pasco when I deployed last year. I was injured and returned stateside in December.
Living in a civilian community, my family has faced many challenges -- leaving the only home my youngest children have ever known, lack of available military support channels, loss of friends, and most importantly, the absence of their father for nearly eight months.
Being in nonmilitary community, we lose the benefit of other military families who can understand and provide support. Young children are often confused, frightened and frustrated that their military parent is gone.
Civilian communities lack the experience to understand what hardships we go through as a military family. Even on a military post, it's still challenging.
I am hoping this letter will foster a greater understanding and acceptance of the challenges facing the military family in the community.
Spec. ANTHONY SHORE, U.S. Army, Pasco