A Presidio of Monterey Military Spouse Appreciation Day Tribute
As we celebrate Military Spouse Appreciation Day on May 12, it’s crucial to recognize the invaluable contributions military spouses make to our country’s defense and beyond. They are the silent heroes who keep the family unit together, take on a greater responsibility to relocate the family and ensure general life commitments are met while their service member is deployed.
Meet Four Incredible Monterey Military Spouses
We spoke to four Monterey military spouses who shared their personal experiences, perspectives, and advice. Here’s what they had to say:
Alie Finocchiaro, Army spouse of Lt. Col. James Finocchiaro, Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center Inspector General, has been a military spouse for 22 years. The military lifestyle was new to her, but she’s thankful for the support of her military family. She admits that moving three times in the early years was different and difficult, but putting herself out there and meeting new people opened up opportunities she may not have had otherwise.
Her most memorable military spouse experience was moving internationally from Belgium to Kansas when she was six-and-a-half months pregnant and had an almost 15-month-old. It was tough, but the [Child Development Center] was amazing, and her daughter loved it. As for her favorite duty station, that’s a tough one. They’ve been stationed at nine duty stations and never in the same place twice. There have been good and bad things about all of them, but there’s always something they miss.
Stephanie LeClair, Navy spouse of Chief Petty Officer (CPO) Adam LeClair, has been a military spouse for 14 years. She was born and raised in Hawaii, so moving to the mainland was difficult for her. However, it opened up her eyes to new cultures, new weather, and new opportunities she may not have had otherwise.
Her most memorable military spouse experience was meeting First Lady Michelle Obama. She shares that it was an experience of a lifetime and that she was thankful for her husband’s hard work that led to the opportunity. As for her favorite duty station, it’s difficult to choose just one. She’s enjoyed every place they’ve lived in and has found something to cherish in each place.
Drew Rogers, Navy spouse of Chief Warrant Officer 3 Chris Rogers, has been a military spouse for 17 years. She admits that the military lifestyle was new to her, and the constant moving was challenging. However, it’s brought her family closer, and it’s taught her a lot about resilience and adaptability.
Her most memorable military spouse experience was discovering her passion for real estate. She realized the value of being able to help military families find homes, and she’s been doing it ever since. As for her favorite duty station, that would be Fallon, Nevada. She loved the small town feel and the close-knit community.
Medea Gabbard, Army spouse of Master Sgt. David Gabbard, has been a military spouse for 21 years. She’s always been around the military, as her father and grandfather were both in the Navy. However, adjusting to the military lifestyle was still a challenge.
Her most memorable military spouse experience was volunteering for family readiness groups. She appreciated the opportunity to support other military families and to make new friends. As for her favorite duty station, that would be Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. She loved the small town feel and the fantastic schools for her children.
- Military Spouse Appreciation Day was established on May 23, 1984, by President Ronald Reagan.
- In 1999, Congress officially made Military Spouse Appreciation Day part of National Military Appreciation Month.
- Military spouses face challenges such as frequent moves, childcare, and maintaining a career or education while supporting their service member.
- Military spouses are nurses, teachers, financial planners, culinary specialists, resource managers, and more.
- Many military spouses sacrifice their own careers to keep their family unit together.
Military spouses are unsung heroes who support our military service members in countless ways. They sacrifice their careers, education, and dreams to ensure the family unit is stable and secure. They are resilient, adaptable, and play a key role in our nation’s defense. As we celebrate Military Spouse Appreciation Day, let’s take a moment to acknowledge the significant contributions and express our heartfelt appreciation for their commitment, dedication, resilience, and unwavering devotion to family and community.
Military spouses are the backbone of our military community. They make countless sacrifices to support their service member and ensure the family unit is stable and secure. As we celebrate Military Spouse Appreciation Day, let’s take the time to honor and recognize these unsung heroes. Their resilience, adaptability, and dedication to family and community make them invaluable assets to our nation’s defense and beyond.