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NEWS | June 13, 2024

Operation Hooah gives military children deployment experience

By Lori A. Bultman 502nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Children from across Joint Base San Antonio got a taste of what their military parents experienced when they deployed during Operation Hooah on June 12, 2024, at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston. 

The 200 participants arrived bright and early at their reporting location where they were divided into companies and platoons. They were then processed through a Central Issue Facility and Soldier Readiness Program to ensure they were ready to deploy. 

Once they were cleared for deployment, children received a deployment briefing from an Army senior leader.

Deployment activities consisted of five stations platoons rotated through, including a Military Working Dog demonstration, Army medical demonstration, obstacle course, simulated weapons qualification, and hands-on experience with military tactical vehicles.

Once the stations were completed, the children returned to a welcome home celebration.

U.S. Army spouse, Evelyn Shallenberger, whose husband has deployed previously, was excited to see her children participate in the event.

“It was a very fun experience for them because they learned what it is like to follow leadership, how to be at the right place at the right time, and how to follow instructions,” she said. “They also had the opportunity to see equipment and vehicles they had not seen before.”

The second half of Operation Hooah was a celebration for the Army’s 249th birthday, which included cake, music, and activities for families.

The event was hosted by the JBSA-Fort Sam Houston Military & Family Readiness Center.