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Fort Hood Press Center
DATE: September 14, 2011 2:20:59 PM CDT

MPs read to students in memory of 9/11 first responders

By Spc. Candace Le
89th Military Police Brigade public affairs 

FORT HOOD, Texas – It was just another Friday before another weekend for most of the students at House Creek Elementary School in Copperas Cove. The children were either too young or not even born when the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks occurred ten years ago.

History books already tell the tale of the brave men and women who charged into the burning, cascading buildings to save those who they promised to protect. This integral day in our nation’s history will forever be learned through stories.

In light of that, military policemen from the 178th Military Police Detachment and Headquarters and Headquarters Company, both under the 89th MP Brigade, came to the school that morning to read stories related to the first responders and answer questions the children may have about the subject.

“We want the students to develop an appreciation for what the first responders did,” said School Principal Larea Gamble. “Instead of just reading about (9/11), interaction will give them a better meaning and a concrete connection to it.”

One MP who is beginning to work with the schools on Fort Hood, took a personal interest in the volunteer opportunity.

“I wanted to help them understand that when something bad happens there are people they can count on, people to help them,” said Spc. Mathew Carlson, 178th MP Detachment school-based community policeman, who will be talking to students through the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program.

“Every age group had different questions,” Carlson said. “There was a lot of diversity of knowledge about 9/11. Some knew a lot when others had never heard of it.”

Carlson noticed some of the children knew of the devastation all too well.

“Some of these kids, even out here in Copperas Cove, have been directly affected by 9/11,” he said. “Even as young as they are, they know about the tragedy that happened ten years ago.”

Like walking examples of patriotism, the MPs roamed the halls of the school, offering stories of heroes like the first responders and a caring ear to questions and comments that followed such as, “Are you working with my mommy in Iraq?” and “My dad is in Ghanistan.”

“Your presence is comforting, especially to those who have deployed moms and dads,” Gamble said to the MPs. “It’s good to let them know that the sacrifices they are making while their parents are gone are for a good cause.”

In their single-file lines, the children would smile and speak to the Soldiers as they passed by. For some, the Soldiers were a reminder of parents far away. For others they were just tall people all dressed the same. But that day, they were all seen as a piece of history class come to life.   

For more information contact:
89th Military Police Bde Public Affairs
89th Military Police Bde
(254) 287-0512
Bldg 16001 Battalion Ave
Fort Hood, TX 76544
[email protected]