As we celebrate this holiday season and approach the New Year, I hope you will all take time to reflect on the many accomplishments we’ve made and the challenges we’ve overcome as an installation and an Army. You’ve all contributed greatly to enhancing America’s fighting force and I want to thank you for your hard work and dedication. Your efforts are what keep our Army and our nation strong!
As you make plans for the holidays, I urge you to place safety first and be prepared for the potential hazards that sometimes accompany the holiday season. Many of you will be traveling over the coming weeks and I encourage you to take vehicular safety very seriously. Properly outfit your vehicle with weather-appropriate safety resources, take necessary rest stops when driving long distances, and never drive under the influence of alcohol. This year’s winter weather has created dangerous driving conditions throughout the country. Pay attention to travel alerts and weather advisories as you travel. Always have a fully charged cell phone for emergency contact but do not talk or text while driving. If you are flying, arrive to the airport early, never leave your bags unattended, and do not offer to carry bags for other people. If you intend to spend time outdoors or participate in winter sports, dress appropriately, wear safety gear and remain hydrated. No matter where you are this holiday season, remember you represent our Armed Forces and we’re counting on you to set a positive example. Conduct yourself professionally at all times.
Finally, keep your homes safe this season. Turn indoor holiday lights off when you are not home, do not leave cooking unattended, only use approved indoor heating devices, and keep a fire extinguisher near-by in case of emergencies.
While we should enjoy this special time of year, we must also remember that many of our brothers and sisters in arms will not be home for the holidays. Like so many generations before during times of conflict, thousands remain deployed in harm’s way this holiday season. In honor of their service and yours, I wish you a safe and happy holiday season and a prosperous New Year!
Always Out Front! Army Strong!