The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced that its National Cemetery Administration (NCA) is partnering with Carry The Load, a nonprofit organization that provides active ways to connect Americans to the sacrifices made daily by the U.S. military, Veterans, first responders and their families.

NCA will participate in Carry The Load’s Memorial May awareness campaign, which covers 40 states, leading up to Memorial Day 2019.

Posted by ED Staff

April is “The Month of the Military Child,” and serves as a reminder that military children serve our country alongside their parents and face challenges that most other students don’t think about, let alone experience themselves. Each military child deserves the chance to flourish in an education environment that best leverages their unique learning style and cultivates their talents. Unfortunately, while service members fight and defend our freedoms abroad, military families are too often denied education freedom at home.

By Devon L. Suits, Army News Service

Soldiers with over 16 years of service who want to transfer their Post-9/11 GI Bill to a dependent must do so before July 12, or risk losing the ability to transfer education benefits.

Last year, the Department of Defense implemented a new Post-9/11 GI Bill Transfer of Education Benefits, or TEB, eligibility requirement, which instituted a "six- to 16-year cutoff rule," said Master Sgt. Gerardo T. Godinez, senior Army retention operations NCO with Army G-1. 

From Navy Exchange Service Command Public Affairs

The Navy Exchange Service Command’s (NEXCOM) Navy Lodge Program boasts 39 facilities worldwide and their mission is to provide military guests on permanent change of station (PCS) orders with a necessary quality of life benefit. In line with that mission set, the Navy Lodge Program is offering families a chance to save on their stay. This year marks the 11th year in a row that the Navy Lodge Program will provide PCS guests with a PCS discount scratch-off card.

Navy Lodge room rates currently average 45 percent below comparable civilian hotels and since 2012 the scratch-off card has saved their military guests an additional $1,555,000. The Navy Lodge scratch-off campaign will go until February 29, 2020 and will give families the opportunity to save 10, 15, 25 or 100 percent off their PCS stay.

Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs

The Air Force now has an enterprise-wide mobile app designed to provide Airmen with streamlined access to information they need for their lives and careers.

Air Force Connect was one of six ideas to compete as a finalist in the 2018 Spark Tank competition, which provided the authority and funding to launch the app Air Force-wide. The app is designed to offer Air Force organizations at all levels a way to deliver timely and relevant information to Airmen, their families and members of the local community. The app is now available in the Apple App Store and Google Play.

From Navy Exchange Service Command Public Affairs

Based on recent changes to the Wounded Warriors Federal Leave Act of 2015, the Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM) announced the creation of a new Disabled Veterans Leave policy for its associates.

“NEXCOM is excited to offer this great benefit to our community’s disabled veterans,” said retired Rear Adm. Robert J. Bianchi, CEO of NEXCOM. “As a Navy command, we understand better than most civilian employers that our veteran workforce may need additional time off for medical appointments due to their disability. In fact, over half of our 14,000 personnel have some military affiliation, so I appreciate our Human Resources team taking advantage of this new benefit for our veteran associates. Our nation’s veterans are a critical component of our NEXCOM team, so it’s important that they have the resources available to take care of their health and well-being.”

By Spc. Justin Stafford

Hundreds of people attended the memorial and funeral of a World War II Soldier in his hometown of Troy, Indiana on March 30, 2019. Most of them never met him.

Pfc. Clifford M. Mills, a Soldier who fought with the 319th Glider Field Artillery Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division, was buried 75 years after his death during Operation Market Garden in 1944.

By Susan A. Merkner

Entries may be submitted April 1 through April 30 for the 2019 Young Lives, BIG Stories contest sponsored by U.S. Army Installation Management Command G9 Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation. 

The essay and artwork contest is open to active-duty Army, Army National Guard, Army Reserve, Army spouse or U.S. Army retiree children in preschool through grade 12.

From Navy Voluntary Education and Naval Education and Training Professional Development Center (NETPDC) Public Affairs

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (NNS) -- Six of the top 10 colleges accepting Tuition Assistance (TA) are participating in the Navy College Program for Afloat College Education (NCPACE), available to Sailors on type 2 or 4 sea duty.

"Our goal for the NCPACE program is to provide eligible afloat Sailors the same quality education available to those on shore duty," said Lisa Teeling, Navy Voluntary Education NCPACE program manager. "Between the available Instructor-Led (IL) and Distance Learning (DL) courses, almost any curriculum is available through our participating schools, which include the majority of the top schools for TA."

By Devon L. Suits April 24, 2018

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Actively seeking opportunities to help others is something that Aaron Hall, a 16-year-old Minarets High School junior from O'Neals, California, constantly strives to do.

"Life is from B to D -- from birth to death -- but there is a C in between. That C stands for the choices we make during our lives," Aaron said, paraphrasing his favorite quote from an anonymous author.

By Devon L. Suits April 24, 2018

ARLINGTON, Va. -- On the eve of the 2018 Operation Homefront military child of the year gala -- an event created to recognize the accomplishments of seven outstanding military kids -- Rebekah Paxton was overwhelmed with emotion as a result of her father's absence.

Just a week prior to the Thursday event, Paxton, this year's Army recipient, was hard at work. Around then, her uncle came in with some horrible news. Rebekah's father had tried to take his own life and was in a hospital on life support.

By Air Force Airman 1st Class Valentina Viglianco 
11th Wing 

JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md., April 27, 2018 April is designated as the Month of the Military Child and is a time to honor the sacrifices of the more than 1.7 million children of military members serving in the U.S. and overseas.

Military children go through different challenges than civilian children, said retired Air Force Master Sgt. Jose Cerna, a parent of two military children. With todays operations tempo of the military and all the deployments military members have to go through, the children have to stay behind and have to be strong without their parent[s].

2018 Virtual Military Spouse Symposium

Learn. Advance. Succeed.

The Department of Defense Spouse Education and Career Opportunities team will host the 2018 Virtual Military Spouse Symposium May 21-24, 2018. The four-day virtual symposium is designed to provide you with up-to-date and relevant information related to career development, entrepreneurship, personal branding, military family well-being, employer connections and more.

Virtual Military Spouse Symposium

Welcome to Plan My Deployment
Supporting service members and their families and loved ones throughout the deployment/mobilization cycle 

Here, you’ll find tips, resources and articles to help you prepare for all phases of the deployment cycle. Articles are organized by phase, so you’ll see information you need to know about pre-deployment, deployment and reunion and reintegration. Think of this as your deployment how-to guide.

  Plan My Deployment

By Air Force Tech. Sgt. Liliana Moreno

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. -- What if you are screaming for help, but no one can hear you? What if your life starts to crumble? Do you know where to turn or what options are available to veterans and service members?

That is exactly how retired Air Force Tech. Sgt. Brandon Jones felt as he reached a breaking point in his military career and decided it was time to reach out to military agencies to get the help he desperately needed.

By Capt. Joseph Siemandel, Joint Forces Headquarters

CAMP MURRAY, Wash. -- A small child in the North Bend area was on the verge of death, if not for heroic actions of a medic from the Washington National Guard and her team, who spotted the child in the back of a sport utility vehicle and quickly went to her aid.

"It was clear that if it had not been for the efforts of Pvt. Hilinkski, the young child would not have survived," said Sgt. 1st Class Jesus Garcia.

By U.S Army Public Affairs

WASHINGTON -- The Department of the Army announced today the summer 2018 deployment of the 4th Combat Aviation Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, stationed at Fort Carson, Colorado, to Europe.

As part of the regular rotation of forces, the 4th Combat Aviation Brigade will replace the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade and support combatant commander mission requirements for U.S. European Command's Atlantic Resolve.

By U.S. Army Public Affairs

WASHINGTON -- The Department of the Army announced today the spring 2018 deployment of the 3rd Cavalry Regiment stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, to Iraq.

The 3rd Cavalry Regiment will replace 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division as part of a regular rotation of forces to support Operation Inherent Resolve.

"The Regiment of Mounted Riflemen is a trained and ready force, just as it has been for the last 171 years, and we stand ready to answer the nation's call to fight and win anywhere in the world," said Col. Jonathan Byrom, 3rd Cavalry Regiment commander. "After spending the last several months conducting an intense training cycle, culminating with a National Training Center Rotation, the troopers are well prepared for our mission.

By U.S. Army Public Affairs

WASHINGTON -- The Department of the Army announced today the summer of 2018 deployment of the 101st Airborne Division Sustainment Brigade stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, to Afghanistan.

The 101st Airborne Sustainment Brigade Headquarters and Special Troops Battalion will replace the 3rd Infantry Division Sustainment Brigade Headquarters and Special Troops Battalion as part of a regular rotation of forces to support Operation Freedom's Sentinel.

From Chief of Naval Personnel Public Affairs

WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Navy announced April 11 in NAVADMIN 091/18 that the April deadline for enlisted women applying to convert to submarine force ratings would be extended to June 1.

This announcement comes as an update to NAVADMIN 300/17, which announced the fourth cycle of female Sailor selections for conversion to Submarine Force ratings. Selections from this round of applications will be for initial integration of USS Georgia (SSGN 729) in 2019, and to fill openings on previously integrated submarines in Kings Bay, Georgia and Bangor, Washington, due to personnel rotating to shore duty.

By Capt. Megan Hoffmann April 18, 2017

CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- Children are typically carefree, no job, no bills to pay, no worries. However, that is not true for the military child.

Military children don't typically fall into the carefree category. At any given time their lives can be in a state of change; living in a single-parent or no-parent household with parents deployed or geographically separated due to military obligations, changing schools and living in turmoil are just a few things military children deal with on a regular basis.

By Staff Sgt. Jannelle McRae, Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs / Published April 07, 2017

Washington (AFNS) -- Eighteen-year-old Jamal Braxton has a busy schedule. The high school senior holds various leadership positions with the Red Cross, participates in multiple varsity sport programs and is a lifeguard. He accomplishes all this as a military child and the challenges inherent in military family life.

Because of his accomplishments, Braxton was presented the Operation Homefront 2017 Air Force Military Child of the Year award by Air Force Assistant Vice Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Stayce Harris April 6, 2017, in Washington D.C. 

By Kenneth Fenner on April 11, 2017

Joy, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, lost her business amid the 2008 financial crisis, and was forced to live out of her van. Being homeless made even relatively simple tasks complicated, but over time, Joy found that she was growing accustomed to homelessness, making it even harder for her to get back to work. It wasn’t until Joy enrolled in the Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency’s Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program, or HVRP, that she was able to get back on her feet. The center helped her find a home and a sense of purpose, and even hired her as a veteran outreach specialist.

Funded by the Labor Department, HVRP provides services to help homeless veterans reenter the workforce, which in turn gets them back on track in other aspects of life.  Services include occupational, classroom and on-the-job training, as well as job search and placement assistance, including follow-up services. Real employment opportunities help veterans reach both financial stability and independence.

By Cheryl Pellerin DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 6, 2017 - The Veterans Affairs and Defense departments are introducing to service members who have Servicemembers Group Life Insurance an online enrollment system called the SGLI On-line Enrollment System that enables active duty and eligible reserve and National Guard members to manage their group and family coverage online. 

SGLI provides $400,000 in automatic life insurance coverage to service members when they enlist. SGLI members get automatic coverage for dependent children and non-military spouses under the family SGLI program.

By Jim Garamone
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 12, 2016  The Defense Department knows that the whole family serves when a military member serves.

April is the Month of the Military Child , a time to highlight the contributions and sacrifices made by military children.

Its also a chance to catch up on what the department does for military families.

By Jim Garamone
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 11, 2016  Time to get your purple on, America.

April 15 is Purple Up! day, a time for Americans to show their support for military families. Department of Defense Education Activity schools will celebrate the event on April 20 because of spring recess. 

Its to build awareness for the needs of military families, said Barbara A. Thompson, the director of the office of family readiness policy.

By Shannon Collins
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 7, 2016  The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said he was appreciative and spirited after meeting surviving family members of service members during the 9th Annual Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors annual Honor Guard Gala last night at the National Building Museum here. 

Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford accepted the TAPS Honor Guard Gala Military Award on behalf of the men and women serving in Americas armed forces. He was introduced by Connor McCracken, the son of Army Reserve Col. David McCracken, who died of cancer in 2011 after serving for 30 years. McCracken, who serves in his high schools Junior ROTC program, said he was honored to introduce the general. 


Mar. 30, 2016 

Department of Defense Publishes Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal Guidance 

The Department of Defense announced today that effective immediately, service members who are serving, or have served, in Iraq, Syria, or contiguous waters or airspace on or after June 15, 2014, who meet eligibility criteria are authorized award of the Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal.

By Terri Moon Cronk
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

MANASSAS, Va., April 24, 2015 - First Lady Michelle Obama announced yesterday that numerous technology and energy companies have committed to hire or train 90,000 veterans and military spouses in the next five years as part of the Joining Forces initiative.

Celebrating the fourth year of Joining Forces this month, the first lady spoke to an audience of veterans, family members, business owners and government leaders here at Micron Technologies, which produces memory-storage devices.

By Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall Jr.
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 22, 2015 - The Defense Department continues to invest in its service members and has introduced a new online informational tool tailored to their unique school programs and educational needs, the Defense Department's chief of voluntary education said in a DoD news interview this week.

Dawn Bilodeau discussed a new online tool called "Tuition Assistance DECIDE."

by Airman 1st Class Aaron J. Jenne
4th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

4/21/2015 - SEYMOUR JOHNSON AIR FORCE BASE, N.C. -- Diala Estela, 4th Fighter Wing key spouse mentor, placed third out of 35 exhibits April 3, at the Visual Art Exchange in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Estala's sculpture, titled "Marry Me," was a dress made from 130 plastic bottles to symbolize the spouses of active-duty service members based on her personal experience as an artist and military spouse.

By Amaani Lyle
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 22, 2015 - As concerns persist over ever-rising obesity levels among American children, the Defense Department will bolster its Healthy Children programs to weave fitness, nutrition and tobacco-free living into military children's curriculum, a Pentagon official told DoD News.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity rates in the United States have tripled since 1980, and these statistics portend possible jeopardy to the readiness of future service members, said Barbara Thompson, director of DoD's Office of Family Readiness Policy, during a DoD News interview on the observance of April as the Month of the Military Child.

The Department of Defense (DoD) announced today that the remains of up to 388 unaccounted for sailors and Marines, associated with the USS Oklahoma, will be exhumed later this year. Upon disinterment, the remains will be transferred to the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) laboratory in Hawaii for examination. Analysis of all available evidence indicates that most USS Oklahoma crew members can be identified upon disinterment.

Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work approved the disinterment of unknowns associated with the USS Oklahoma and also established a broader DoD policy , which defines threshold criteria for disinterment of unknowns.


By Amaani Lyle

DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 15, 2015 - For many new or expecting parents, the stress of navigating the needs and developmental milestones of an infant or toddler can rival that of deployments.

But a well-established program not only provides many resources to help untangle the parental requirements of understanding the critical first three years of a child's life, but also brings child care experts right into military families' homes, Barbara Thompson, director of DoD's Office of Family Readiness Policy, said in a recent DoD News interview. April is the Month of the Military Child.


The casting team for the hit new game show Celebrity Name Game is searching for FUN, OUTGOING MILITARY PERSONNEL to be contestants!

We're looking for TEAMS of 2 OR MORE who are in the SoCal area who want the chance to WIN $20,000!!

By Amaani Lyle
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 9, 2015 - The Defense Department observes April as the Month of the Military Child, and also recognizes this time of year as it pertains to a more sobering topic: National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

In a recent DoD news interview, Barbara Thompson -- director of DoD's Office of Family Readiness -- stressed that anyone aware of red flags and potential cases of abuse has an obligation to bring the concerns to light.


Relativity Television and the creator of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" are launching a nationwide search for hard-working American couples to take their shot at the American Dream of becoming homeowners. In the ultimate do-it-yourself competition, chosen couples will put their lives on hold for up to nine weeks and tackle a series of intense renovation and remodel challenges. Only the most resourceful and competitive will survive, and the last-couple-standing will win the mortgage-free deed to a house in ATLANTA, GA. 

Casting is open NATIONWIDE, and accommodations will be made for those selected from out-of-state. Couples will be required to live in Atlanta during the competition (up to nine weeks) and must be ready to move to Atlanta should they be awarded the grand-prize home. 

DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 1, 2015 - ThanksUSA, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to thanking America's troops through the gift of education, is inviting children and spouses of America's armed forces to apply for its post-secondary education scholarships, according to a ThanksUSA news release issued today.

Those interested can apply via the organization's website, and the application period extends from today through May 15, 2015, the release said.

By Amaani Lyle
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 1, 2015 - To highlight the year-round contributions, courage and patriotism of the military community's youngest members, the Defense Department observes April as the Month of the Military Child, a Pentagon official told DoD News.

Established by then-Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger in 1986, the month recognizes some 1.9 million U.S. military children ranging in age from infants to 18 years old who have one or both parents serving in the armed forces, said Barbara Thompson, the director of DoD's Office of Family Readiness Policy.

DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, March 31, 2015 - With the expiration of a law that allowed service members to carry up to 75 days of leave from one fiscal year to the next, troops should plan to carry no more than 60 days of leave into fiscal year 2016, defense officials recently announced.

Service members will automatically lose any accumulated ordinary leave in excess of 60 days on October 1, 2015, officials said. Troops covered by special leave accrual rules may still carry up to 120 days from one fiscal year to the next, officials noted.

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III will present the Prisoner of War Medal to eight World War II era U.S. Army Air Forces personnel during a ceremony at the Pentagon auditorium, Wednesday, April 30 at 10 a.m. EDT.

The Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James authorized the award of the POW Medal to 143 USAAF airmen who were interned in the Wauwilermoos, Switzerland, prison camp during World War II. 

By Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall Jr.
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 28, 2014 - The American Forces Network Broadcast Center has established a hashtag for Facebook users to help AFN honor military spouses during Military Spouses Appreciation Day on May 10.

The initiative will center on a special hashtag -- #spouseappreciation -- that Facebook users can include in posts and photos that pay tribute to military spouses.

By Nick Simeone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 23, 2014 - Despite a national unemployment rate hovering at just under 7 percent, a Pentagon program intended to help unemployed military spouses find jobs -- including positions with Fortune 500 companies -- is surpassing its goals, connecting more than 60,000 military spouses with 220 private- and public-sector partners since the program began three years ago.

The Military Spouse Employment Partnership is designed to help military spouses -- whom Defense Department research shows are, on average, better educated than their civilian counterparts -- reach their career goals, said Meg O'Grady, a senior program analyst in the Pentagon's Office of Family Policy and Children and Youth.

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 19, 2014 - The Defense Department has dealt effectively with the Heartbleed computer vulnerability, but individuals must do their parts as well, DOD's deputy chief information officer for cybersecurity said.

Richard A. Hale spoke about Heartbleed during an interview with American Forces Press Service and the Pentagon Channel.

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 22, 2014 - First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, are calling on Americans to submit questions via social media about "Joining Forces," a national initiative they started three years ago that mobilizes all sectors of American society to support service members and their families.

Tomorrow, the first lady and Dr. Biden will mark the initiative's third anniversary at Fort Campbell, Ky., where they will speak to service members, families and employers at the Veterans Jobs Summit and Career Forum and will answer some questions about the initiative.

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 15, 2014 - President Barack Obama will award the Medal of Honor to former Army Sgt. Kyle J. White in a May 13 White House ceremony for conspicuous gallantry while serving in Afghanistan's Nuristan province Nov. 9, 2007, White House officials announced today.

White left the Army in July 2011 and now lives in Charlotte, N.C., where he works as an investment analyst.

By Terri Moon Cronk
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 11, 2014 - First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden today announced several new initiatives designed to strengthen support for military caregivers.

On the third anniversary of the Joining Forces launch, Obama and Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, were joined by former first lady Rosalynn Carter, former U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole, military caregivers, and business, labor and military leaders at the White House-hosted event.

Dr. Ramani wants to save YOUR relationship!  A ground breaking new Television Show has world renowned Dr Ramani working with couples that are letting the INTERNET ruin their relationship. 

Unpack your relationship baggage, investigate and resolve your concerns ONCE & FOR ALL with professional guidance, resources and support!

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By Elaine Sanchez
Brooke Army Medical Center

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO - FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas, April 26, 2013 - Wounded soldiers recovering here have a message they'd like to pass on to the Boston bombing victims: You're not alone.

They can relate to the devastating aftermath of an explosion and the emotional and physical pain of lost limbs. And they know firsthand the courage and strength required to heal after blast injuries like those at the Boston Marathon.

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By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 29, 2013 - Service members married to other service members are no longer automatically enrolled in the Family Servicemembers' Group Life Insurance program, Pentagon officials said.

The change was effective Jan. 2, and to date affects about 4,500 service members, Coast Guard Cmdr. Kristen Martin, who heads the Defense Department's SGLI policy office, said in an interview with American Forces Press Service and the Pentagon Channel.