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Ellsworth Airmen give children taste of deployment process

Senior Airman Melanie Allen paints the face of a child during the Kids, Spouses and Teachers Understanding Deployment Operations event March 13, 2010, at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D. Airman Allen is a 28th Security Forces Squadron training instructor. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Matthew Flynn)

Senior Airman Melanie Allen paints the face of a child during the Kids, Spouses and Teachers Understanding Deployment Operations event March 13, 2010, at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D. Airman Allen is a 28th Security Forces Squadron training instructor. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Matthew Flynn)

Senior Airman Carolyn Southards shows a military child how an identification kit can verify different substances March 13, 2010, at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D. The focus of the event was to give families of Airmen a better understanding of what it means to deploy. Airman Southards is a 28th Civil Engineer Squadron emergency management journeyman. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Matthew Flynn)

Senior Airman Carolyn Southards shows a military child how an identification kit can verify different substances March 13, 2010, at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D. The focus of the event was to give families of Airmen a better understanding of what it means to deploy. Airman Southards is a 28th Civil Engineer Squadron emergency management journeyman. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Matthew Flynn)

Children of base Airmen do push-ups for a physical training demonstration during Kids, Spouses and Teachers Understanding Deployment Operations event March 13, 2010, at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D. Senior Airman Zachary Christy, 28th Force Support Squadron food services specialist, teaches the children how to do a proper push-up. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Anthony Sanchelli)

Children of base Airmen do push-ups for a physical training demonstration during Kids, Spouses and Teachers Understanding Deployment Operations event March 13, 2010, at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D. Senior Airman Zachary Christy, 28th Force Support Squadron food services specialist, teaches the children how to do a proper push-up. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Anthony Sanchelli)

ELLSWORTH AIR FORCE BASE, S.D. (AFNS) -- Members of the 28th Force Support Squadron Airman and Family Readiness Center here taught base children, spouses of military members and local teachers about the deployment process March 13 here.

The event, called Kids, Spouses and Teachers Understanding Deployment Operations, or KUDOS, SUDOS and TUDOS, featured various military demonstrations, a mock deployment line and a B-1B Lancer tour.

"We've held this event in previous years," said Tech. Sgt. Ann Mitchell, 28th FSS NCO in charge of readiness. "But this year is the first time we've used the Pride Hangar and invited teachers to the event."

Sergeant Mitchell said she felt it was important to invite teachers so they could gain a better understanding of what their students and parents go through during a deployment.

The children who participated in the event were able to experience a variety of demonstrations and displays from the 28th Security Forces Squadron, 28th Logistics Readiness Squadron, 28th Civil Engineer Squadron Explosive Ordnance Flight, 28th CES Fire Department, and a B-1B from the 34th Bomb Squadron.

"I think it's pretty cool to see the B-1," said George Hiss, son of Col. Steven Hiss, the 28th Bomb Wing vice commander. "I can't wait to go inside (the bomber) and check it out."

Aside from seeing the inside of a B-1B, the children, their parents and teachers were able to walk around the hangar and participate in hands-on presentations from the various participating squadrons.

"This is an incredible experience for the families at Ellsworth," said Ellie Taliaferro, wife of Col. Jeffrey Taliafero, the 28th BW commander. "It's like a hands-on museum for the kids. They can pick up the weapons, try on the suits and make the machines work."

Mrs. Taliaferro said the fun and exciting events allowed the children to become more familiar with what their parents are doing during a deployment. She acknowledged the Airman and Family Readiness Center for the hard work they devoted to planning this event.

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