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97 AMW and local leaders proclaim April as the Month of the Military Child

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U.S. Air Force Col. Matthew Leard, 97th Air Mobility Wing commander and Jack Smiley, City of Altus mayor talk with military children and their families at Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma, April 1, 2021. There are over 1.2 million military children worldwide according to American Association of School Administrators. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kayla Christenson)

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U.S. Air Force Col. Matthew Leard, 97th Air Mobility Wing commander, signs a document declaring April the month of the military child at Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma, April 1, 2021. Since 1986, April has been “The Month of the Military Child” a nationally-recognized celebration meant to bring awareness to what military children sacrifice. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kayla Christenson)

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U.S. Air Force Col. Matthew Leard, 97th Air Mobility Wing commander, talks with community members about the month of the military child at Altus Air Force Base, Oklahoma, April 1, 2021. The Mayor of Altus, Jack Smiley also signed the document. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Kayla Christenson)

ALTUS AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. --

Col. Matthew Leard, 97th Air Mobility Wing commander, and Jack Smiley, City of Altus mayor, signed a document declaring April the Month of the Military Child, at Altus Air Force Base, April 1, 2021.

“We do recognize that there are challenges to being a military child,” said Leard. “ We want to take a few minutes to really focus and make sure the military children get all the support and care they would need, not only on base, but also in our local community.”

There are more than 1.2 million military children worldwide according to the American Association of School Administrators. By dedicating the month of April to military children, this recognizes the needs of military children and raises awareness of their challenges.

“Here at Altus AFB and in our local school districts, we are simply wanting to celebrate our children and show appreciation to them,” said Judy Mott, 97th Force Support Squadron school liaison officer.

Numerous events throughout the month are dedicated to celebrating Month of the Military Child annually. This year, events hosted by the 97th FSS and community are focused on celebrating the youth of the installation.

“The Airmen and Family Readiness Center, Youth Center, and Child Development Center all have fun projects scheduled throughout the month,” said Mott. “Additionally, Navajo Public Schools have an entire week of activities dedicated to this month to celebrate their military students, and Altus Public Schools will also be celebrating Purple Up! Day on Friday, the 16th.”

Some of these events include:

April 8, 2021 - Exceptional Family Member Program and New Parent Support Program Playgroup at Wings of Freedom Park

April 9-10, 2021 - Teddy Bear Sleepover and Picnic at Base Library

April 10, 2021 - EFMP Super Family Bowling Hour at Galaxy Bowling Alley

April 16, 2021 - National Purple Up Day and “Find the Money” Base Wide Scavenger Hunt at A&FRC

April 17, 2021 - Superhero and Princess Brunch at Club Altus and Five Love Languages for Children at Club Altus

April 29, 2021 - Build a Bear Station at the Child Development Center

For more information on the month of the military child activities call the A&FRC at (580)481-6761 or the Youth Center at (580)481-7903.

ALTUS AFB FLICKR ALBUMS

Click on the link below to see all the photos from Altus AFB's official ceremonies.

Altus AFB Flickr Albums