Topic: Military Families

The author’s father, Merlin Chetlain, sits on seabags on the flight deck of the USS Hornet at Naval Station Long Beach in 1960.

Reuniting Dad With His Warship After 37 Years Was a Reminder That Life Is Fleeting

The legendary warship Dad served on—used in three wars and as the recovery ship during America’s first and second lunar landings—was now rotting in place.
Katherine Witt reunites with her children after seven months in Afghanistan. Photo courtesy of the author.

I Wanted My Life as a Mom Separate From My Work With Death. I Had to Make Room for Both.

For months, Katherine Witt had managed to keep her roles as Air Force mortuary affairs officer and Mom separate. Then she had to make room for both.
US soldier with machine gun in Battle of Fallujah

The First Battle of Fallujah: ‘We Hurt Ourselves in So Many Ways’

Twenty years on, the battle is viewed as a turning point in the Iraq war, serving as a reminder of the complexities and consequences of modern warfare.
For years, Ivan Ingraham’s family waited for his return. Now, he waits for his daughter.

‘Welcome Home’–For Years His Family Waited for His Return. Now, He Waits for His Daughter.

After years of deploying and coming home, veteran Ivan Ingraham is now on the other side as he welcomes his daughter home from a deployment.
Transfer cases, containing what may be the remains of U.S. service members classified as missing in action from WWII, line the hull of a U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, in March 2017.

I Stare at the Empty Chair Next to Me. He Isn’t Coming. We Still Wait for Him.

We imagine what it would be like if Sam walked in. We know he won’t. We stood in the rain and watched as his flag-draped coffin was loaded on an airplane.
Enoch H. Kanaya served in France and Italy during World War II with the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, a segregated Japanese American unit.

A Hero Lived Quietly Across the Street. Little Did I Know He Helped Save the World. 

The Nisei generation, of Japanese Americans fought bravely and honorably for a nation that viewed them with suspicion and incarcerated them.
Cassidy La Bouff and her dad, U.S. Army Maj. Douglas A. La Bouff, sitting on the couch wearing USA Hockey Team jerseys waiving the American flag.

My Dad Should Have Lived a Long and Joyful Life. His Love Was Meant to Fill This World.

My dad knew two things. He wanted to serve this country and wouldn’t live until his 40th birthday. His prophecies came true.
Home, writes Jessica Morse, is where your stuff is. Photo by Canva.

After Years of Nomadic Military Life, Permanence Can Be Frightening

My identity as an Air Force spouse was something I hadn’t planned for. I struggled to find myself in the chaos of brown boxes and tan packing paper.
Three years after Secretary Denis McDonough promised that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs would begin covering gender-affirming surgery, that commitment has still not been met. Stock photo.

Years Later, VA Still Has Not Fulfilled Promise to Cover Gender-Affirming Care

Transgender veterans say they see the latest Department of Veterans Affairs delays as further evidence of politically motivated bias against them.