News: Families get a taste of soldier life
Story by Sgt. William Smith
FORT CARSON, Colo. – Laughter, giggles and excited squeals could be heard in and around the Waller Physical Fitness Center, as children got their faces painted in camouflage, learned about various weapon systems, and climbed in and out of multiple vehicles, Sept. 14.
The children of soldiers from 1st Battalion, 66th Armor Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, enjoyed a day playing with and learning about the equipment their soldiers use on a daily basis.
“The goal is to provide them with the opportunity to see what we use every day,” said Maj. Eric Tisland, executive officer, 1st Bn., 66th Armor Reg., 1st ABCT. “I have three kids, ages three, six and nine, and they have never seen my weapons, they’ve never seen the vehicles that we use and they’ve never had someone run them through a physical training event.
“The whole purpose was to allow the kids to experience what their soldiers do,” Tisland said. “That’s really the ultimate goal; for those that come here to get the opportunity to be able to get to do whatever it is they wanted to, whether it was the weapons, the camouflage, the PT station or just checking out the vehicles in the parking lot.”
One soldier said he enjoyed being able to show his family what he does when he is training or deployed.
“It is nice to get my daughter out here and have some family interaction on things I deal with every day,” said Sgt. Andrew Mitchell, armor crewman, Company D. “I think a lot of times when we are out in the field environment away from our homes and families that they can still remember these times and its shows them that we are out there working hard.”
Spc. Adam Przybylinski, healthcare specialist, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, said events like these are a good opportunity for families.
“My favorite part about today has been watching all of the families enjoy themselves, especially all the little kids learning about the equipment we use all the time,” he said. “I think that this is pretty important to get the kids more involved with what we do. The kids get a better appreciation for what their parents do in the Army.”
Przybylinski said that it was a good tool for getting the families involved and it helps to raise their morale.
“It is a good tool to get the families involved to help support the unit. I think stuff like this should happen more often. It helps raise the morale of the families to be able to interact with us in this way.”