Take Care of My Family
Sometimes the best thing you can do for a deployed soldier is support his family while he's away.
Because the war on terrorism will not be over anytime soon, today’s soldiers should expect to deploy at least once during their service period. Soldiers are members of the armed forces, regardless of branch. Deploy refers to relocation of forces and supplies to a desired operational site.
The National Guard is the oldest component of the armed forces in the United States, having fought in every major war since the original 13 colonies were formed. In addition, they serve as first military responders to domestic emergencies.
In May of this year, Minnesota’s Army National Guard will deploy its largest contingent of soldiers in recent years. The Guard men and women are headed for operations in Kuwait. I recently attended a day-long series of educational seminars covering pre-deployment information for soldiers and their loved ones. There were approximately 1000 National Guard men and women in attendance. Many were accompanied by parents, and many by their spouse or significant other.
I took a lot of information away from that day, and I will share it all with you in future articles. Today I will share the message that sticks closest to my heart. When asked what we can do for him, the soldier will most often respond: “Just take care of my family.”
When I really think about that request, it makes so much sense. Our soldiers have a
sense of duty, a feeling that what they do makes a difference. They carry
a passion to make right from wrong, to fix what is broken. They serve to preserve
the rights we take for granted. So, what can we do help our soldiers while they are
We can take care of his family. His family may be elderly parents and/or a significant other. His family may be his not-so-elderly parents and other siblings. He may have a spouse and/or children. Whatever the case may be, there are ways we can make this time easier for the family, and for the soldier.
We can mow lawns, prune bushes, water flowers, walk dogs, shovel snow, babysit,
transport, shop, make meals, visit or simply call on the phone occasionally. We can
organize within a church group, a neighborhood or other association to make sure all of this happens. We can join our local military aid organizations (ei: Beyond the Yellow Ribbon) to find families that need assistance, and other people willing to help.
Our soldiers are often able to communicate from anywhere, in ways that give them real time news from home. We have the ability to make sure that they hear everything at home is fine, and that their family is well.