Family takes the forefront at Camp Perry

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Family comes first. 

That was the idea behind family day at Camp Perry, a National Guard training facility near Port Clinton, Ohio. The festivities were held on July 11, 2009 in honor of the 200th Red Horse Squadron of the Ohio National Guard.

The squadron specializes in keeping the military highly mobile by providing a civil engineering response force. This keeps missions running smoothly and helps to keep troops safe.

VFW Post 2480 and their Service Officer, Richard Ellis, wanted to show appreciation to the unit. Ellis has been a member of the VFW for 15 years and works as a volunteer for the Family Readiness Group (FRG). In order to bring some added appeal to the event, Ellis applied for a Military Assistance Program grant.

The grant came through successfully, providing for food and fun to be enjoyed by all. Activities were aimed at children and adults alike and included a moonwalk, miniature golf, hoolihoop contests, water balloon and egg tosses, the limbo, face painting and balloon animals.

“It’s very important to get these families together whenever we can,” said Ellis. “It’s great to see all the children playing together and even greater to see adults and children playing together.”

The event was a good opportunity for service members and their families to meet each other. It also allowed family members to get acquainted with Col. Michael Skomrock.

Because FRG is not allowed to solicit donations, Post 2480 members were out in the community urging local businesses to donate door prizes to a good cause. A whopping 488 letters were sent out with this goal in mind.

“Local businesses did a great job of getting involved,” said Ellis. “It’s good to be able to give back and to know that guests aren’t leaving empty-handed.”

The guests may have left with parting gifts, but most importantly, they left with a better sense of what the VFW is all about: family.



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