Sunday, May 8, 2016

Military Moms Mother's Day Deployments

On Mother’s Day, deployed soldier-moms deal with separation from children in Texas
Killeen Daily Herald
David A Bryant
Herald Staff Writer
May 8, 2016

Even for longtime veterans such as Staff Sgt. Deidre McPherson, the signal and communications noncommissioned officer in charge for the brigade’s 2nd Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, it can be rough. She has missed five Mother’s Days due to deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan and rotations to different European locations.
CAMP CASEY, South Korea — Mother’s Day is a time we set aside thoughts of ourselves and focus on that very important person in our lives who brought us into the world. People across Central Texas will fill the restaurants in the area today while taking their mothers out for a special meal, or might be cooking and doing chores they normally would not do and finding other ways to say “thank You” to the woman who gave them life.

But not all of those mothers can be home for a special day of pampering, and for 193 moms, today will be spent thousands of miles away from their children while they serve in uniform with the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, in South Korea.

For the women who chose to serve their nation first by joining the U.S. Army, Mother’s Day is another reminder of the many things they have given up to defend their fellow Americans. For some of the newest members of the Army, however, it is one of many important days in their children’s lives they have missed — and more than once.
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Rep. Gwen Graham makes surprise Mother’s Day visit to Afghanistan
Tallahassee Democrat
Special to the Democrat
May 5, 2016
Fla. Rep. Gwen Graham visiting mothers and others serving in the armed forces and women in Afghanistan.
(Photo: Special to the Democrat)
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Gwen Graham, D-Tallahassee, joined a bipartisan congressional delegation visit to Afghanistan to meet with deployed mothers in uniform and Afghan women fighting for equal rights and working to rebuild their country.

“It’s difficult for anyone in our military to leave their family and serve overseas – and it can be especially hard on mothers serving in warzones,” Rep. Graham said. “It was an honor for me to meet with these brave mothers serving in Afghanistan. They deserve our respect, admiration and support.”

The congressional delegation hosted a Mother’s Day luncheon where they discussed the challenges faced by deployed mothers and they delivered handmade Mother’s Day cards to troops. In addition to meeting United States Military moms, Rep. Graham also met with women serving in the Afghan Armed Forces and with Rula Ghani, the first lady of Afghanistan.
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Four children at home, Mom deploys to Afghanistan
Des Moines Register
Kim Norvell
May 6, 2016

Every day after school, Jessica Hoenicke and her four kids work on homework around the kitchen table.

They practice multiplication and the alphabet. Her two oldest compete to see who can solve math flashcards the fastest. The younger ones read out loud.

This week there's been less focus on work and more on play. They've been going to the park and riding their bikes. Anything the family of six can do together.

On Mother's Day, Sgt. Hoenicke will deploy with her Iowa Army National Guard unit to Afghanistan. She'll be gone for a year. That's 365 days without reading, writing and arithmetic around the table; 365 days without bus drop offs and pick ups.
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