COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - From commanders to congressmen, leaders in military affairs met in Columbus to hear directly from family members of those serving our country.
When boots are on the ground, life for families left state-side can be up in the air. On Wednesday, lawmakers like Congressman Sanford Bishop of Georgia acknowledged those challenges and sacrifices of those supporting U.S. service men and women.
"Our armed forces depend on the support of the families, and our country depends on that support also," said Bishop.
Local military wife, Molly Ritterbeck, says she knows the ropes from her husband's 12 years of service, but there are still things to learn.
"Getting ready for the next eight years, it will still change, but it's a good basis to start gathering information on," said Ritterbeck.
At the annual Military Family Summit, held at the National Infantry Museum, congressional representatives had the chance to peel their ears away from national chatter, and tune in to first hand accounts of what support efforts need to expand.
"To get out of Washington D.C. and to go directly to where the military families are," said Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers.
"With a transitional type lifestyle, having a job somewhere is important," said Ritterbeck, however getting those jobs each time a family is uprooted proves tricky without help, spouses tell us.
Wednesday's gathering offered panel discussions on health care, employment, and benefits, all to help take one less concern off the shoulders of the men and women who already carry so much.
"We owe them a debt of gratitude for their service for this country and yet today there's still issues that are challenging to them," said Rodgers.
The Congressional Military Family Caucus is a bipartisan congressional caucus that educates elected officials, congressional staffers, senior military leaders, and the public on a wide range of military family.