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2000 Miles In Less Than 2 Weeks–Part 2

Our next journey was Fort Jackson South Carolina for my Brother-in-law’s Boot Camp Graduation!  This was such a neat experience to participate in.
Family Day
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We arrived at Hilton Field Fort Jackson and waited for about 45 minutes while everyone filed into the stands.  It was so exciting.  These Men and Women had not seen their families for over 2 months and talked but maybe a couple of times on the phone…they aren’t allowed their cell phones and are kept under strict orders while in Boot Camp.  They threw out smoke bombs and then the troops emerged from the tree’s across the fields. {My sons called them Stink Bombs} Emotions were running high for all of the families to see their loved one.
They lined up by company and we thought my Brother-in-law was company C and turns out he was company F.  When we were released to the field we looked all through company C and one soldier told us that he was just there but, his Fiancé had just came and got him…what?  He is married already and my sister-in-law was the one asking…turns out there was another soldier in company C with the exact same name, Mormon and from the same state as my brother-in-law.  What are the odds of that? 
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My SIL handled the stress of not being able to find her husband rather well considering she hadn’t seen her husband for 2.5 months and only talked to him twice on the phone.  She also had gone all night with out sleep because she was on a red eye flying out and had just come from the airport. My FIL was able to fly out at the last minute and it was a complete surprise to my BIL.  I just love the pictures I captured of the moments when we finally found him.
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We had matching t-shirts made in support of my BIL and my kids were so excited to see their Uncle.
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First stop we had to make for my BIL was to the on post Cinnabun… never seen a grown man so happy for a Cinnamon Roll!  He had no junk food for 2.5 months! We at lunch at a park, went bowling and to the military museum on base.
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My young boys are huge Army fans right now so they got some new attire to sport while on base that matched their Uncles and they were in heaven.
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This is my BIL above re-enacting the only time he found himself in a little trouble.  He was on the 3 day campout with no sleep and was pulling security for the camp.  He fell asleep and was caught.  He had to dig a hole as big as he could stand in for his punishment…remember he had no sleep for 3 days!  At the museum he showed the boys what had happened.
My BIL couldn’t leave base and had to report back by 7:45pm that night because graduation was the following day.
Graduation Day
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We went back to Hilton Field where the Soldiers lined up in their companies…we got it right this time and sat in front of Foxtrot.  This was the first graduating class in a long time to wear their dress uniforms and it was quite a site to see several hundred men in the dress uniform.  They marched passed us in companies.  The whole ceremony did not last long.  Then again we had to go find my BIL and this time it was even more mass confusion trying to find his company.  In the midst of it we lost my 8yr old daughter…who we thankfully we found about 10 minutes late but, none the less scary moment as a Mom.
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Again we posed for a couple of pictures.
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My SIL’s Father is retired military and he was there in his dress uniform.  He has a high ranking in the military so everywhere you walk with him people start saluting.  It turns out there are perks to having a Colonel in the military has your FIL because he got to cut in at the check out line.
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We all went and had lunch together and then said our goodbye’s.  It was so hard to say goodbye to our family.  We have such a fun time and we really enjoyed meeting my SIL’s parents.  The experience on base was so wonderful to get to participate in especially with our kids.  It made me appreciate even more what our service men and women and their families sacrifice to protect our great nation. 
We’ve been home for a few weeks now and just started to talk about another road trip this Summer…we will have to see…not ready just yet!  Any guesses on where we will go next?
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3 responses »

  1. Hey, came to say thanks for leaving me feedback on my blog. I appreciate it. I love the pictures of DYT stuff you share on FB. It inspires me a lot.But WOW, this post really got to me. You see, my son will be heading to Basic Training at Fort Jackson in July and I'm hoping to be able to come out to his graduation. Thanks so much for sharing pictures and about your experience there. Congrats to your BIL!!!

    Reply
  2. p.s. Glad you found your daughter. I bet that was scary!Just added myself to your followers. You have a great blog. I need home decor inspiration as well.

    Reply
  3. Kassie, I'm so glad you liked this post! What a trial it will be to not talk to him or see him but, the graduation is so special. I hope you will be able to make it. We stayed at the Marriott Town Suites that was really nice. Make sure you book your hotel early because they book up really fast and some people that went through discount sites got bumped. We had Marriot points and were fine but, I also arrived early to check in. On Family Day they can not leave the base and it was so crowded to buy food on base and it wasn't cheap for not so great food. We took in a picnic lunch and found the pond with picnic tables to eat at. If you have any other questions hit me up on facebook or leave me a comment here and I can tell you more what to expect.

    Reply

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