Keiki of deployed families stay at Mighty Mo

Keiki take part in various activities during their overnight stay on the Battleship Missouri Memorial.

STORY AND PHOTO BY BATTLESHIP MISSOURI MEMORIAL

This year, the Battleship Missouri Memorial hosted an overnight encampment for children of deployed families stationed at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Operation Santa 2017 welcomed keiki 10 to 16 years old from Saturday, Dec. 16 at 4 p.m. to Sunday, Dec. 17 at 8:30 a.m. on the historic USS Missouri.

“The holidays are a time to spend with loved ones and share in the spirit of happiness,” said Mike Carr, president and CEO of the USS Missouri Memorial Association, caretaker of the Battleship Missouri Memorial. “We want to make sure our military keiki experience a joyful Christmas while one or both of their parents are serving our country.

The event kicked off with a late-afternoon tour of the Mighty Mo, activity stations, followed by a gourmet Christmas dinner on the ship’s mess deck and crafting of a special message to their deployed family member. The overnight event ended with an early morning Hawaiian-style breakfast and a special appearance by Santa.

“To see every child in attendance for Operation Santa with a big smile on their face meant we made a positive impact on them this Christmas season,” said Dan Parsons, director of education at the USS Missouri Memorial Association. “These activities onboard the Battleship Missouri allow our future generation to experience this living piece of history and take part in honoring her legacy, and really understand why their parents serve our country.”

The Battleship Missouri Memorial offers a variety of educational programs and experiences to learn more about the Mighty Mo’s role in World War II, the Korean War, and Operation Desert Storm. The programs are open to teachers, students and parents who would like to engage and explore more than 70 years of history on the Missouri.

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Category: News