On a cool September evening, the home of the 75th Logistics Readiness Squadron “Combat Loggies” echoed with laughter and the excited voices of children who worked their way through a simulated deployment line.
Instead of getting ready to go the Afghanistan or one of the many other locations the LRS prepares Team Hill’s members to deploy to, this experience gave the children of military families assigned to the LRS, Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Security Forces and Combat Camera units a chance to learn what their parents go through before a deployment.
“Deployments are difficult both for parents and children, and the LRS’s goal was to hold an event that honors the sacrifices that military children make, while also educating them on the contributions their parents make to our nation, said 2nd Lt. Amy Polaneczky, 75th Mission Support Group executive officer and the lead for the event.
Activities were presented in a positive and upbeat atmosphere, teaching the children aspects of military duties in a unique and impactful way.
The children processed through a simulated deployment line and had their checklists completed with stickers and stamps, instead of the usual scrawled signatures their parents would receive during out-processing.
Squeals of delight were heard throughout the building as they saw an EOD robot up close and in action, and sat behind the wheel of an up-armored Humvee. Mouths gasped in awe as a military working dog ran through its paces with its handler in the protective suit.
Many children spent time crawling over numerous vehicles, seeing a military working dog demonstration and wearing and holding chemical warfare equipment. They were seemingly amazed to try on and feel firsthand how heavy body armor, helmets, M-4 rifles and M-248 Squad Automatic Weapons can be.
Col. Ron Jolly, 75th Air Base Wing commander, brought his children to see firsthand what the teams who work for him can accomplish. He lauded all the squadrons who combined efforts to make the night a rousing success.
“This has been a great night and a great team effort,” Polaneczky said.“The collective efforts of all the units that participated allowed these military kids to see firsthand all the amazing things that their parents do, experience and support while deployed.”
“Ultimately, we hope the children in attendance recall memories from their deployment day experience when their parents are called to duty and smile,” Polaneczky added.
(75th Air Base Wing Public Affairs contributed to this article.)