FORT HOOD — Army spouses were scattered across the grass with each team of four in a matching outfit for III Corps Spouses Combat Day, held at the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness Center.
While some wore T-shirts bearing their spouse’s unit, others dressed in different takes of the Army Combat Uniform, superhero costumes and even Rosie the Riveter outfits, as each team competed for the top score of the day.
“We’re the Rosies from the Rock,” said one team composed of four women who just moved to Fort Hood from Baumholder, Germany, which is also known as “The Rock.” They met on Facebook and formed a team as a way to get to know each other and their new home.
“It’s a way to create a support channel because when your husband’s deployed or in the field, it’s good to have that support network,” said Sarah Kennedy, whose husband joined 1st Cavalry Division’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team about three weeks ago.
Some of the events included an obstacle course, first-aid station competition,
M-4 assembly time trial, physical training competition and a paintball marksmanship competition. It wrapped up with lunch and an awards ceremony highlighting those teams and individuals who excelled.
“This is all about paying back to the spouses who support their soldier downrange,” said Lt. Col. George Murray, commander of III Corps’ Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion.
The battalion hosted the event, but it was open to all Fort Hood spouses. More than 150 attended — the highest number since the event began three years ago.
“We try to encompass all units on post,” Murray said. “We chose to have it here because (the facility) is open to all service members and spouses to build resiliency. ... We wanted to expose them to this particular campus.”
Just as it is in the military, the competition included an emphasis on teamwork.
“It’s all about teamwork,” said Capt. Rebecca Ore, who worked on the event as part of the Phantom Battalion. “In the Army we do everything as a team and we encourage one another.”
Celeste Armstrong was competing for the second time in the combat day. Her husband, who is currently in Korea, asked for photos, she said.
“Last year, he got home from Iraq the day before. He watched and said he’d never laughed so hard,” she said with a smile.
While she had a good time pulling on body armor and competing against her fellow spouses, she said the event provides some insight into the work her husband does.
“I suggest all spouses try it. You get to taste a little bit of what they do,” she said. “We just love our guys so we’re out here to support them.”
Contact Rose L. Thayer at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7463. Follow her on Twitter at KDHmilitary.