The threat of rain didn’t dampen the spirits of Warrior Transition Brigade and Carl R. Darnall Medical Center’s families who hopped over to WTB campus Saturday for the fifth annual Easter Egg Hunt.
More than 300 joined in the USO-sponsored festivities, which included Easter egg hunts, bean bag toss, ladder golf, a bouncy house, pizza and guest appearances by the Easter Bunny and his two sidekick pups.
Opening the event was Col. Patricia Darnauer, Darnall commander, who praised the event as “unifying” for the family and the community in response to last week’s Fort Hood tragedy.
“That’s why we are here today,” she said, “and to celebrate the season and to celebrate each other.”
One family member, Ariel Sanchez, said the event offered an opportunity for bonding.
“This is just a great time to get together as a family,” she said, adding that it was very important to hold the event despite what happened April 2. “We all need the time to get together and reconnect as families.”
The party was a first for 1st Sgt. David Cardenas, B Company, Darnall, who brought his two children.
“I heard last year how much fun it is, so I decided to bring my kids out here,” he said. “We’re having a great time.”
Sgt. Jean Cox, B Company, 1st Battalion, Warrior Transition Brigade, said her two children, ages 4 and 6, especially loved the bouncy house.
“Most units don’t have a bouncy during events like this,” she said, “so my kids were really excited when they saw it.”
This was Charles Parker’s second time to join in the Easter egg celebration.
“We were here last year,” said the training coordinator for Darnall, who added that he was glad the party wasn’t canceled. “Life has to go on because the mission still has to be accomplished.”
Warrior Transition Brigade commander Col. John Kolessar paid a special tribute to the numerous volunteers who braved the chilly morning temperatures to transform the WTB campus into a bunny haven for kids by hiding 1,200 prize filled eggs for the three age-group hunts.
“Without your volunteering, this would not have been made possible,” he said, adding another big thank you to the Fort Hood USO for their continued support and sponsorship of morale-boosting events for the Warrior Transition Brigade’s wounded, ill and injured soldiers.