November 13, 2012


A Military Story Mission

Our Mission: The USO lifts the spirits of America’s troops and their families.
Millions of times each year at hundreds of locations around the world, the USO lifts the spirits of America’s troops and their families.  A nonprofit, congressionally chartered, private organization, the USO relies on the generosity of individuals, organizations and corporations to support its activities. The USO is not part of the U.S. government, but is recognized by the Department of Defense, Congress and President of the United States, who serves as Honorary Chairman of the USO.


Sesame Street Deployment DVD

Wounded Warrior Project
The mission of Wounded Warrior Project is to honor and empower wounded warriors

K9s For Warriors 
They specialize in placing service dogs with post 9/11 veterans suffering with PTSD

Life-changing companions: How to afford a service dog:

How to Make York Dog a Service Dog

Students and First Time Voters
Navigating the Election Process for Students and First Time Voters 

Real CaregiversWe showcase caregivers and their journeys through interviews, videos, and articles. Becoming a Military Medical Professional.

Honor Flight Austin 
Transport America’s veterans in the five surrounding counties of Austin to Washington, D.C. to visit those memorials dedicated to honor their service and sacrifices.

This event provided free wedding ceremonies and vow renewals to active US Military personnel. 

Operation Love Reunited
This is a fully volunteer organization that offers professional photography sessions to military families and members who are getting ready to deploy, who are currently deployed, or those who are coming home.

Welcome Them Home
This is a network of photographers who donate our time and skills to soldiers and their families as a thank you for the sacrifices that are being made for our country. Each photographer in the network has agreed to photograph a soldiers homecoming, free of charge.

Any Soldier Inc. started as a simple family effort to help our son, Army Sergeant Brian Horn, who was one of the 1,000 Soldiers who parachuted into Northern Iraq on March 26th, 2003. We knew his unit, the 173rd Airborne Brigade was living under very rough conditions, so we were sending Brian care packages as often as we could.  This effort is 100% voluntary.You send your support, and maybe some stuff, directly to whatever unit or units YOU select.We have volunteer Soldier "contacts" on the "Where To Send" page. They list what the folks they represent want and need. Click through the names and YOU select who YOU wish to support, then YOU send direct to them. We have a unique search capability so you can easily identify what the troops need, who you wish to support, etc.  

Wish Upon a Wedding
This is a fabulous organization that provides free-of-charge weddings, allowing couples facing serious life-altering circumstances to concentrate on the issues affecting their lives. 

Operation Open Arms
This organization offers local businesses, associations, and individuals an opportunity to support our active duty troops. They are an all-volunteer 501(c)3 charity in Southwest Florida and are not affiliated with any other Southwest Florida charities.

Brides Across America
A national charitable organization uniting military brides and bridal salons across the country for a common purpose by supporting our troops and their families.  

Tidewater and Tulle is the wedding inspiration blog for couples getting married in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia.  Click here to read tips on planning a military wedding

Our Military Kids, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization created to provide support and recognition to military children. This may include children ages 3 years through the 12th grade of deployed National Guard and Reserve service members, along with children of Wounded and Fallen Warriors from all branches of service. The grants to children pay for fees associated with athletic, fine arts, and tutoring programs. Our Military Kids’ grants keep military children engaged in activities of their choosing, helping to relieve the stress of separation from a parent by providing a positive distraction, minimizing emotional destabilization, building self esteem, and enabling academic achievement.

Resources for Veteran Owned Business:

Financial Help for Veterans: is large organization and very well in touch with supportive care units, surrounding hospitals, treatment centers, therapy centers, and so on. Their network is widespread and advantageous. They are able to swiftly refer victims to treatment facilities. Not to mention they even give back to the cancer community by sponsoring the American Cancer Society, American Lung Association, Make a Wish Foundation, MD Anderson Hospital and more.

"Consumer Safety Guide was created to keep the public informed about consumer dangers and safety issues associated with numerous products that can cause the public harm. Our website is constantly being updated with the most recent information on the most popular prescription medications and FDA-approved medical devices that could be endangering your health or putting your loved ones at risk. Our mission is to keep you informed and help you make the most educated decisions about your health care!
We have been getting THOUSANDS of inquiries from Veterans who have suffered hearing loss from 3M Earplugs and we believe that it is extremely important to spread this information to as many Veteran organizations as we can - in hopes to help save or get restitution for as many Veterans who have been affected!"
Thousands of veterans who used 3M Combat Arms Earplugs and have suffered hearing loss and tinnitus may be eligible to file lawsuits.
A U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) whistleblower lawsuit filed against 3M was settled in June 2018 with an agreement for the company to pay $9.1 million.

Career Resources for our Veterans

The HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing

Moving? How to Use a Relocation Calculator

Step-by-Step Guide to the VA Loan Process

VA Home Loan Calculator

Moving Companies That Offer Military Discounts

What Documents Are Needed to Sell Your House?

Find Family Services and Resources Near You

Military Buddy Finder from

Veteran Healthcare Resources

Important Medicare Facts That Every Veteran Should Know

Mental Health Resources for our Veterans Families

Guide to Creating a Peaceful Home to Improve Mental Health for Veterans 

10 Tips for Keeping a Relationship Strong During Deployment and Separation

7 Crucial Components to Highly Effective Deployment Communication

International Phone Plan Options During Overseas Deployment

Military Care Package Ideas: What To Put In A Care Package

Post-Deployment Adjustments Military Couples Face

The How-to Guide for Veterans: Creating a Peaceful At-Home Atmosphere Upon Returning Home

Substance Abuse Resources for Veterans
Many men and women who have bravely served our country are sadly left with painful memories they wish they didn't have. In many cases, veterans turn to drugs and alcohol as a way to deal with these thoughts, especially PTSD. Luckily, there are resources available to help. Click to learn more:
Find A Veterans Treatment Center Near Me

All Treatment is the most comprehensive treatment facility locator on the web. Rehab Directory was built using Government data from 

They provide comprehensive and integrated care to those in the community struggling with addiction and mental health issues. "At Jade, it is an honor to serve our Veteran community through understanding the specific culture and experiences that comes from military involvement."

Drug Rehab Guides for Addicted Veterans & their Families

PTSD/Trauma Therapy for Addiction Treatment 

This guide will discuss the resources available to anybody experiencing difficulty with drug and/or alcohol dependence. 

Northbound Addiction Treatment Services

Understanding a Veteran with PTSD: Servicemen and women oftentimes face unique challenges when leaving active duty and readjusting to civilian life. 

Drug Rehab Connections
Our goal is to help these individuals and loved ones by providing them with information and support on different addictions and recovery resources available to them. We are not a treatment center, nor do we refer our audience to centers. Our website is here to provide information and support only

Hill & Ponton Disability Attorneys
Of Swords, Sabers & Rifles
In some military weddings, the newly married couple exits the ceremony under an impressive archway of swords, sabers or rifles. This unique tradition is perhaps one of the most defining differences between a military and civilian wedding. It is also sure to rate three tissues for tears of pride.

For commissioned officers, the ceremony is referred to as the Arch of Sabers. Non-commissioned officers and enlisted personnel use a variation of it is known as the Arch of Rifles. 

Generally speaking, after the I do’s are exchanged, the bride and groom leave the service and enter the archway lined by honor guards holding the ceremonial weapons. They may stop to kiss and then pass through. Before completing the symbolic safe passage into marriage, the last two members of the honor guard block their journey while one of guards gives the new military spouse a rather un-ceremonial swat on the rear accompanied by words of welcome to whatever branch of service she has married into. You won’t find it written down anywhere, but perhaps those blocked weapons of choice and swat are also quite symbolic of the challenges military couples face!  Makes you think….

Consult with your chaplain regarding protocol specifics for your ceremony of choice.

That’s An Awfully Big Cake Knife, Honey

Q: What do you need to know about marrying if you're in the military?
A: If you are in the States (not assigned overseas), getting married as a member of the military is much the same as civilian marriages. You don't need advanced permission and there is no special military paperwork to fill out before the marriage. You simply get married according the laws of the state where the marriage is taking place after obtaining a marriage license off-base.

If you are overseas and marrying a foreign national, it's a different story. There are tons of forms to complete; you must obtain counseling and your commander's permission (which is rarely withheld without very good reason); your spouse must undergo a security background check and pass a medical examination. Finally, the marriage has to be "recognized" by the United States Embassy. The entire process can take several months.

Regardless of where or who, once married, if the spouse is non-military, the military member can bring a copy of the certified marriage certificate to the Personnel Headquarters on the base to receive a dependent ID card for the spouse, and enroll the spouse in DEERS (Defense Eligibility Enrollment
Reporting System), to qualify for military benefits such as medical coverage and commissary and base exchange privileges.

Timing can be important in a military marriage. If you have PCS (Permanent Change of Station) orders, and get married before you actually make the move, you can have your spouse added to your orders and the military will pay for the relocation of your spouse and her property (furniture and such). However, if you report to your new duty assignment first, and then get married, you will have to pay for the relocation of your spouse out of your own pocket.

Actually "making the move" means reporting into your new base. So, you can leave your old base, take leave (vacation), get married, report into your new base, get your orders amended to include your new spouse, and the military will pay for the spouse's move. However, if you report to your new base, and then take leave to get married, you're on your own, when it comes to moving expenses for the spouse.

In many ways, the U.S. Military wedding is like any other wedding. The ceremony itself is not a military service but a religious one. What makes it a military wedding is the attire and perhaps some traditions not found in civilian weddings. There is such pomp and circumstance, pageantry and patriotism in these sophisticated rituals. Please feel free to contact us with your comments, and any other traditions and customs which you would like us to include. 


He or she should be consulted before hiring musicians or a photographer. Military custom dictates that a formal invitation to the reception be extended to the chaplain and his or her spouse.

Wedding Attire
An officer or enlisted personnel in the bridal party wear uniforms in accordance with the formality of the wedding and seasonal regulations.For officers, evening dress uniform conforms to civilian white tie and tails. Dinner or mess dress uniform is in accordance with black tie.

In the case of non-commissioned officers, dress blues or Army green uniforms may be worn at formal or informal weddings. A female officer may wear a traditional bridal gown, or she may be married in uniform. A boutonniere is never worn with uniform.

White gloves are a necessity for all saber (sword) bearers. The choice to attend the wedding in uniform as a military guest is optional.

At the ceremony, the bride or groom’s commanding officer and spouse may sit in the front pew if the parents are not present. Or, the commanding officer may sit near or with the family.Flag and general officers are customarily seated just behind the two families.

At Best Mattress Reviews, we are all about helping active-duty, reservists, and military veterans get the recognition and rest that they deserve. We applaud your service and recognize that because of the critical work that you do, you might have specific sleep needs. We hope our sleep guides and informative reviews help active-duty military and veterans find the best bed for them.

What is a Household 6? A military man’s wife. The head of the household. The one that keeps up with the arduous tasks of washing uniforms, picking up smelly PTs, going to the commissary and PX, raising the children, packaging care packages…you get our drift! A HH6 is the one in charge of everything! The name is derived from where said wife spends most of her time (the household), and the number 6 is the designation for a commander of a Company/Troop, Battalion/Squadron, Brigade/Regiment, Division or Corps. Used in a sentence – “I’d really love to go with you on the hunting trip, but household 6 pulled my weekend pass.” 

Interactive Empowerment for Army Wives” by featuring Field Exercise™ events, AWTR podcast, FP Live chat feature, featured columns, Loving A Soldier (LAS) blog, military shopping links, resource database, post directory, interactive toolbar, and social media galore!

Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC)
CNIC's mission is to enable the Navy's Operating Concept through Enterprise alignment of all shore installation support to the Fleet, Fighter and Family. They provide a great resources on protocol & etiquette here.

Military Wedding Discounts has been created to help members of the Armed Forces in both the UK and USA save money when planning their wedding.

The Successful Military Wife is here to educate, motivate, and give you the tools you need to create your own massive success. 

A blog about life as a military family, her journey with health and fitness, our crazy family full of boys, and how she balances it all.

This is a great resource to learn more about Military Schools plus see a list a list of all military schools in the U.S.

Hounds and Heroes 
Mission Statement: Hounds and Heroes, founded by Bonnie-Jill Laflin, Sports Broadcaster, and the only female scout in the NBA for the Los Angeles Lakers, is a national nonprofit dedicated to lift the spirits and morale of our active, wounded, and veteran military troops worldwide, and to increase community awareness, education and, involvement about the cruelty to animals and necessary care for animals through rescue, foster, and adoption.

Reebok Spartan Race and GovX have just formed one of the largest race registration discount programs for U.S. Military service members and government first responders through the GovX network. Spartan Race, has been voted the #1 obstacle race by Outside Magazine and are the global leader in obstacle racing since 2005. GovX is the leading website devoted to serving U.S. Military personnel and federal, state and local first responders by offering secured access to exclusive and premium products. Spartan Sprints are muddy 3+ MILES / 15+ OBSTACLES course races. Check out their website with lots of news, events, videos, photos and more here:

Wife And War is her story of witnessing 9/11 and of being a military wife whose husband was deployed to war  

'Unremarried Widow' A Memoir by Artis Henderson - "In this powerful memoir, a young woman loses her husband twenty years after her own mother was widowed, and overcomes two generations of tragedy to discover that both hope and love endure."

Caliber Collision is an active participant in several programs that honor and support our military heroes and their families.  These programs include Carry the Load (fundraises and raises supports for veterans), Hire our Heroes (hires military veterans), and Recycled Rides (gives restored vehicles to military families).  While we are honored to participate in Carry the Load and Hire the Heroes, Recycled Rides is a program we created and currently manage.  Through Recycled Rides, we were able to give 20 vehicles to military veterans in 2014, and we have 25 scheduled for 2015.  

Notable Quotes: 

"I will never quit. My nation expects me to be physically harder and mentally stronger than my enemies. If knocked down I will get back up, every time. I will draw on every remaining ounce of strength to protect my enemies and to accomplish our mission. I am never out of the fight." - Marcus Luttrell