Miss Northern Idaho Brings Attention to Military Kids


Lucy Maud Montgomery had the right perception when she wrote about military families in her novel, Rilla of Ingleside: “Our sacrifice is greater than his…our boys give only themselves. We give them.”

America has done a significant job in promoting our servicemen and women, with national holidays like Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day. However, how many people would know what month is the Month of the Military Child (it’s this month!)? How many people take the time to consider the accomplishments and struggles of military children?

Unfortunately, many Americans do not realize the sacrifices of military “brats” are insurmountable compared to the daily lives of their peers.

My purpose in my platform within the Miss Northern Idaho, Miss Idaho, and the Miss America organizations is to raise awareness of the challenges and blessings that come from being a military child.

Because of my platform, military children will know that they are valued, not only for their sacrifice, but also for who they are as a person. Growing up a military brat myself, I am aware of what it feels like to have a parent deployed, to move a number of times, and to feel alone and abnormal because no one understands what it’s like to have the experience of being a military child. I am also aware of the advantage of knowing people in every corner of the globe, to be diverse, to be adaptable, and to be independent.

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I have had much involvement with Operation Homefront, which assists military families financially, because of their Military Child of the Year award. I also have involvement with the National Military Family Association because my family was the Coast Guard Family of the Year in 2010. Both of these organizations salute military children, and using my involvement with these programs, Miss North Idaho will be able to educate the public about the many sacrifices and accomplishments of local military children.

Military children are by no means ‘normal;’ oftentimes they are more mature than their peers – stronger emotionally, and better at acclimating.

I think the main issue in not appreciating military children is simply ignorance. People just don’t think about the homefront as much as they do about those on the front lines. My purpose is not to take away from our amazing soldiers, but to show the civilians what goes on behind the scenes in the military lifestyle. Everyone has seen videos of emotional reunions of soldiers and their families, but it is much less common to see a video of a family packing up their home to move for the fifth time in 3 years, or to see a child kissing a picture good night because their parent is overseas.

With the title of Miss Northern Idaho, I’d like to highlight our military brats for their sacrifices, but much more so for their accomplishments. Even though I changed schools so many times, I was always able to keep excellent grades and I know many others who were able to do the same. That’s not an easy feat, especially when different schools and states have differing curriculum.

“Experts say that military children are well-rounded, culturally aware, tolerant, and extremely resilient. Military children have learned from an early age that home is where their hearts are, that a good friend can be found in every corner of the world, and that education doesn’t only come from school. They live history. They learn that to survive means to adapt, that the door that closes one chapter of their life opens up to a new and exciting adventure full of new friends and new experiences.”

These are just a few examples of how special military children are. Many military brats are also exceptional volunteers, outstanding citizens, and are passionate for their country. They make their families and nation proud, and deserve to be recognized!

Do you know and awesome military kid? Tell us about them by leaving a comment!

Posted by Olivia Kennedy, military child and Miss Northern Idaho

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  1. 1
    Jessica Webb

    I’m the proud mother of two resilient military brats. My sons are 8 and 4 – they were both born while their daddy was deployed. We just wrapped up deployment #5, and two months later their dad left for a 4-month school. He’s missed more birthdays than he’s been home for. Collectively, over the 11 years we’ve been married, he’s spent more time gone than at home. Even with these statistics, our boys are strong, resilient, fiercely proud, kind, supportive and independent young men. I tell them all the time “it’s a hard life, but it’s our life, and we love it!” When their daddy leaves we wipe away our tears and slap on a smile because it’s time to get excited that the homecoming countdown can begin!

  2. 3
    Chris Battaglia

    My family served 15 years in the Marine Corps. I have 6 children born in three different states. My oldest daughter Erin moved seven times in her school career. She graduates this year with a 4.0 G.P.A and won a full ride scholarship at a private University. So proud of her. She learned how to adapt to new situations. She has set high goals for herself and works diligently to make them happen. Her faith in Jesus is strong and has gotten her through tough lonely times. Moving as a teen is so difficult. Our church family in many different states became our extended family.

  3. 7
    Tasha

    My mom met my step dad over seas. If it weren’t for my aunt introducing them together I wouldn’t have an amazing family of 6 siblings. Two if my sisters and I moved to three different schools within 18 months. And in the years I myself have been to 10 different schools throughout my school life. We had been through a lot throughout the time my mom was gone and gone through things no child should go through but we stayed strong and brave for my mom. We are so proud to be military brats. Because of her our family isn’t just blood related but soldiers are part if it as well. I couldn’t be happier with my family and my life. Thank you to all the soldiers and to all military brats your awesome, wonderful, absolutely extraordinary and brave

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