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Brig. Gen. George W. Smith, Jr., the commanding general for the Combat Center, reads ‘Night Catch’ to parents and children at Condor Elementary School Oct. 27, 2011. Seated beside him is his wife Kathleen.

Photo by Cpl. Andrew D. Thorburn

Storytime connects with kids

28 Oct 2011 | Cpl. Andrew D. Thorburn

Brig. Gen. George W. Smith, Jr., the commanding general for the Combat Center, read ‘Night Catch,’ by Brenda Ehrmantraut, to parents and children at Condor Elementary School Oct. 27, 2011.

The story is about a father and son who are separated. The father teaches his son to still feel close by playing a game of catch with the stars.

After reading the book, Smith asked the children how they communicated with their parents during deployment.

Some of the students also talked about other relatives they have who have served in past wars. With communication advancing as fast as it is, the Marine Corps and young service members are learning how important extended family plays an important part in the lives of Marines and the impact of those bonds, said Smith.

As the children and parents finished telling about how they communicate with deployed family and other family members who are away serving in the military, Smith prepared to start signing books and asked the children to sign his personal copy of ‘Night Catch.’ The children also created their own paper stars with a message they would want to tell their loved ones while they are deployed.

“This is a great way to help motivate the students and help them understand what they can do while their mom or dad is away for long periods of time,” said Paul Gadduso, the principal of Condor Elementary School.


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