Military families find creative ways to celebrate Father’s Day - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Military families find creative ways to celebrate Father’s Day

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COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

Dads play many roles in our lives. They're our teacher, nurturer, and best friend.

While many children will be celebrating Father's Day this Sunday, some might not get to see their dads on this special day.

We met with a girl who hasn't spent Father's Day with her dad for the last four years.

While others are celebrating this Sunday with their fathers, Alexis Dowdell will have to celebrate the day without him. Her father is in Afghanistan and she will have to honor him from afar.

 "The couple of times when he would leave I would just break down and cry...but after awhile I'm gonna see him again so it's a see you later, not a bye...and just knowing that they are doing the right thing helps you move on day by day," Alexis said.

She still talks to her dad on the phone and looks through their pictures with her grandma. Alexis say her grandmother Roeaster Coles is her biggest supporter. She helped Alexis find strength and respect for her father's duty.

 "He was doing this for his children," said Roeaster. "It was a new experience for her, being away from her dad. But as time passed, she began to get a little stronger."

Child psychologist Dr. Kevin Weis explained the importance of finding peace when a family member is missing.

"I think it's important to write a letter, draw a picture, take a picture...maybe review photo album, write letters, tell stories," said Dr. Weis. "You need to honor your father in a way that they want to be remembered...it's about feeling connected to other people and feeling like you can persevere."

Alexis isn't sure when she's going to see her father again. But Alexis and her grandma will celebrate Father's Day together while eating a nice dinner and sharing fun stories about her dad like they've done for the past four years.

"We miss him a lot but we still have fun because we know why he's there," Roeaster said.

 "Love you, Dad," said Alexis.

Alexis says she's thinking about making a video for her dad on this Father's Day. Whether a child will be celebrating this Sunday with their father or not, it's always important for all family members to stick together and keep each other positive.

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