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    3rd Sustainment BDE FRG Advisor Nominated for Military Spouse of the Year

    3rd Sustainment BDE FRG Advisor Nominated for Military Spouse of the Year

    Courtesy Photo | Lt. Col. Michael D. Hagerty, commander of the Special Troops Battalion, 3rd...... read more read more

    FORT STEWART, GA, UNITED STATES

    03.12.2018

    Story by Staff Sgt. Sierra A. Melendez 

    50th Public Affairs Detachment

    Anna Hagerty, a 20-year Army spouse and senior spouse advisor for the Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Sustainment Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, was recently nominated for the Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year for 2018.

    Anna has tirelessly and proudly served besides her husband, Lt. Col. Michael D. Hagerty, the commander of the STB, throughout countless temporary duties, dozens of training and field rotations, over 15 permanent change of station moves and several deployments – including being knee-deep in a tour to Afghanistan with the Marne Division.

    “I nominated Anna in January after seeing an announcement about the Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year competition in the Frontline,” said Michael. “I thought it would be a nice way to publically recognize Anna for everything she does to support our Soldiers and our community.”

    According to the Armed Forces Insurance website, the award was founded in 2008 to honor military spouses from all branches of service who maintain the home front while their serve members defend the nation. There are three phases of voting, culminating in the announcement of the Military Spouse of the Year in Washington, D.C. in early May.

    Michael believes Anna’s loyalty to not only him, but every unit he has been assigned to throughout his career is what authenticates her nomination.

    “My husband and I met in college at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina,” said Anna. “In the course of ten days, he graduated college, was commissioned as an officer and we got married. It was a bit of a whirlwind.”

    Shortly after, Anna found herself over 1,000 miles away from the place she called home in Fairbanks, Alaska. Once her husband deployed, the sinking feeling of loneliness and isolation soon set in.

    “One of the most difficult things at first was just not knowing how the system works,” said Anna. “Not knowing what’s going on and kind of the lack of communication.”

    Eventually Anna fell in with her husband’s unit’s Family Readiness Group. The feelings of solitude and obscuration quickly dissipated once she found a family in a group of spouses in situations identical to hers.

    According to Army Regulation 600-20, Family Readiness Groups are command-sponsored organization comprised of Soldiers, civilian employees, Family Members and volunteers belonging to a unit. They prides mutual support and most importantly, a network of communications among the Family Members, the chain of command and community resources.

    “I felt an immense amount of comfort in knowing that I wasn’t alone,” said Anna. “I didn’t have to feel isolated or like I was the only one doing this. I relied on the wealth of information of camaraderie of the other spouses.”

    20 years later and Anna is still heavily involved in the FRG community. She has held several position within FRGs across the Army and has volunteered a myriad amount of time and resources to surrounding communities around installations.

    Her relentless dedication to the Families of the Soldiers who serve besides her husband, the amount of contributions she has made and her unwavering commitment to the military community is what prompted her husband to nominate her for the award.

    “Anna exemplifies what it means to be an Army spouse,” said Michael. “She's a caring mother and committed volunteer and has served alongside me in the Army for the past 20 years. She helps serve the families of several hundred deployed 3rd Infantry Division Soldiers. In addition, Anna serves the community by volunteering on the local YMCA [Young Men’s Christian Association] board and is dedicated to making our base and local community better.”

    When asked about her feelings on the distinct nomination, Anna remained humble.

    “I’m not doing anything special,” said Anna. “I’m just doing what I need to for our Families, for our friends and the people that we care about. When you do it on those terms, it comes very naturally and easily.”

    While Anna serves as a senior spouse advisor for a battalion, she hopes to expand her audience by hosting quarterly seminars aimed to younger spouses that will be open to all Families throughout Fort Stewart and Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia.

    Anna acknowledges that often times, FRGs carry a negative connotation with horror stories of cattiness and cliques. She hopes the seminars will offer Army spouses that have heard the rumor mill a new perspective and fresh outlook on the benefits of FRGs.

    “Unfortunately, some of what they have heard may be true,” said Anna. “But that is not the norm and I think it’s important that we foster the kind of environments that are knowledgeable and caring. I want them to see the value in FRGs.”

    She said there isn’t a specific skill set needed in order to be an FRG leader.

    “I love how different everyone is,” said Anna. “I can do things that maybe you can’t and you can do things that I can’t, but together we can do great things. With that, there’s a place for everybody and their own unique talents and gifts.”

    While Lt. Col. Hagerty has his battalion to provide over watch on, Anna has her own squad to maintain. The Hagertys have a total of seven children, ranging from ages two to 17.

    “I have my hands full,” said Anna. “But my heart’s full too.”

    Anna urges young spouses interested in attending her seminar and senior spouses who can assist in the forum to email her at annahagerty2018msoyfshaaf@gmail.com. While the date and location of the seminar are pending, she hopes she can utilize her new recognition as an opportunity to spread the word on the importance and benefits of FRGs.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 03.12.2018
    Date Posted: 03.12.2018 15:56
    Story ID: 269066
    Location: FORT STEWART, GA, US 
    Hometown: ATLANTA, GA, US
    Hometown: BOONE, NC, US
    Hometown: FORT STEWART, GA, US
    Hometown: HINESVILLE, GA, US
    Hometown: JACKSONVILLE, FL, US
    Hometown: RALEIGH, NC, US

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