The Army Community Service hosted a birthday celebration outside of Building 1520 to celebrate its many years of service June 25. This "aloha-style" event commemorated the ACS' 48 years of military assistance with snow cones, cupcakes, and a moon bounce. This family friendly event was held to recognize the efforts that the ACS has made to support members of the military community and its success at Fort Detrick. "Our main purpose is to help soldiers and their families through stressful times," said Michelle Hewitt, Exceptional Family Member Program manager. "We try to improve their lives though our programs." ACS has various programs that target any problem a soldier's family may encounter. These programs serve to promote self-reliance, resiliency, and stability during war and peace. "Always go to ACS first with a problem," said Command Sgt. Major Kevin Sharkey of the Atlantic Region (Fort Sam Houston, Texas) as he described his experience as a non-commissioned officer of 31 years. "I take care of my soldiers by taking them to ASC. There is always someone to help; you won't go wrong with them." The many programs that ACS has to offer benefit the core of the Army community: the family. As U.S. Army Chief of Staff Raymond T. Odierno once said, "The strength of our Nation is our Army; the strength of the Army is our Soldiers; the strength of our Soldiers is our Families."
The celebration was hosted by the ACS to acknowledge not only the success that its programs have achieved within individual families, but the impact they have made on the Army community as well.
"At ACS, we take pressures off so they can carry on daily lives," said Army Emergency Relief Spc. Thomas Withrow. "It is enriching to see the smiles on their faces and to be able to give families what they need. That is when we know we have done our job."