Military Child of the Year semifinalists announced

Haleigh Dilks

Operation Homefront

Operation Homefront has announced the 95 semifinalists for the 2018 Military Child of the Year (MCOY) Award. The year 2018 marks the 10th anniversary of this event which is a celebration of the achievements of military children. Semifinalists include Navy family member Haleigh Dilks, 14 of Honolulu.

Military Child of the Year Award for Innovation semifinalists include Air Force family member Shelby Barber, 17, of Ewa Beach.

The Military Child of the Year Award reflects the positive impact that these special young people have made on their military families, their schools, and their communities. The final seven award recipients will travel to Washington,

D.C., to be recognized at the April 19 gala, during which senior leaders of each branch of service will present the awards. They also will each receive $10,000, a laptop computer and other donated gifts.

Shelby Barber


Beyond the ceremony and gifts, the Military Child of the Year Award provides recipients the opportunity to meet senior military leaders, elected officials, celebrities and other military children.

Mark Newberry, the 2013 Air Force Military Child of the Year, recently wrote, “One of the greatest honors of my life so far was representing the Air Force in 2013 as an Operation Homefront Military Child of the Year… If you would have told me as a high school senior that I would be chosen to represent military children at the Operation Homefront gala, meet the Air Force Chief of Staff, Gen. Mark Welsh, and receive an Air Force ROTC scholarship that would afford me opportunities to study what I love, jump out of planes, and become a pilot, I wouldn’t have believed you. Being a military child has afforded me so many opportunities that not many children get to experience.”

Thirty-five finalists will be selected in February by a panel of judges chosen by Operation Homefront’s senior leadership.

Six Military Child of the Year Award recipients will represent each branch of the armed forces — the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and National Guard — for their scholarship, volunteerism, leadership, extracurricular involvement, and other criteria while facing the challenges of military family life. The seventh award is the Military Child of the Year Award for Innovation. This award goes to a military child who has designed a bold and creative solution to address a local, regional or global challenge.

For more information, visit www.militarychildoftheyear.org.

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Category: News