Recap - Operation Bootcamp Family Camp at Forest Springs

Who of us does not benefit from the sacrifice that our military and their families make every day?  How do we thank them in turn?

It’s no secret that members of the military face incredibly difficult and high stress situations during their time of serving our country.  In fact, 20% of service members in Iraq and Afghanistan experience acute stress, depression, and anxiety.  The numbers are much higher for Vietnam and Korea vets and it doesn’t end after their military service is over.

Being a spouse or a child of a military member isn’t always easy either.  Military families relocate 10 times more often than civilian families – on average every 2 or 3 years.  Recent studies have shown that spouses and children in military families experience higher rates of mental health diagnoses, trauma and related problems.  Returning to family life with experiences that are difficult to process and talk about create a need to connect with others with similar circumstances.

These statistics show us that our military families need our help.  At the very least they need time to get away from the stress, build stronger relationships, and take time to heal.

For this very reason Operation Boot Camp partnered with Forest Springs to host its’ very first Military Family Retreat – Sept. 16-18.

We purposed to start off small this year, serving 11 families from the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines.  The young and the “more experienced” came representing service in Vietnam, Operation Desert Storm, Iraq wars and Afghanistan.

A couple of testimonies that came of out this weekend:

“A value of the weekend was a connection with others who have experienced or have shared experiences of military life today or in the past and encouragement and knowledge that were are not alone with many of the circumstances and how others are or have handled some of these issues”

“The importance of communication and how our actions affect others really stood out to me this weekend.  We need more time as veterans to build trust.  We need this event again, as families with military service we need to be able to come together and talk and work through things”

We could not put this event on without the generous financial support of the many businesses and individuals who gave sacrificially. This year's sponsors were - 

  • AdvancePierre Foods
  • Alpha Baking Co.
  • Correction Creek Chiropractic Center LLC - Medford, WI
  • Curley's BBQ
  • Ghidorzi Property Management Services LLC, Wausau, WI
  • Jim Kryshak Jewelers, Inc - Wausau, WI
  • Johnsonville Food Service
  • Kevin Hermening - Mosinee, WI
  • Marzetti
  • Medford Cooperative - County Market - Medford, WI
  • Mid-Wisconsin Beverage, Inc. 
  • Nicolet National Bank - Green Bay, WI
  • Rocky Rococo Pizza - Wausau, WI
  • Susan Stefonik - Wausau, WI
  • Susan and Rollie Thums; Century 21, Rib Lake, WI
  • Taylor Credit Union - Medford, WI
  • Vanee

Thank you to all of those who saw the need and stepped up to make this event happen.  Our desire is that we will see this event grow in the future to meet the many needs of our military families and provide an opportunity for them to learn, heal and bond together over shared experiences and past sacrifices.

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