Month of the Military Child

MARCH AIR RESERVE BASE, CALIF. -- Most of us have a soft spot for children - especially young children. It is as though we intuitively know how defenseless they are and how vulnerable the can be. As a father of a three year old, I am especially aware of this and I take my responsibilities as a parent very seriously. My son makes me want to be a better human being because I "owe" him that example. I believe that he is "taking pictures" of everything I do.

So, it is fitting that as we celebrate the Month of the Military Child, we reflect on this awesome responsibility we have as parents and as "role-models" for all young people, especially our own. For us who serve in uniform, it is a dual responsibility because we are vulnerable to deployment and extended absences from our families.

This responsibility is not diminished by the fact that our families support us because our children want to know where we are; where we go; what we do and why. It is our duty and our charge - to explain to them the unexplainable and to know that we can not make them understand with our words alone.

Our hope is that when they are grown, they realize that we did what we did - not to deny them our presence, but to protect and defend our way of life and their freedoms and liberties.

So, as we celebrate our Military Children and indeed all children, let us not forget that children are our future, children are our legacy and the memories we give them about our service and our patriotism are the "pictures" that they keep with them throughout their lives. Let's make them as memorable as possible.