Skip Navigation

Welcome to Army OneSource Family News - the monthly newsletter from Army Community Service (ACS) and, the Army's most comprehensive portal for Family members.



Obama Salutes Iraq War Vets at White House Dinner

With a formal dinner for the few, President Barack Obama paid solemn tribute to the many.

The president who opposed the Iraq war from its outset thanked those who fought its battles by sitting down to a candlelit meal with a small cross section of the million-plus who served there over the past nine years.

IMCOM Commander visits Hawaii

A three-star general clad in the Army Combat Uniform grapples with a sergeant first class, also wearing ACUs, in a steamy and stuffy exercise room, here. About two dozen junior Soldiers, sitting on a blue mat, watch as the pair demonstrates a triangle choke.

The general jumps up from the blue exercise mat and asks the Soldiers, "What else do you need to know?" The Soldiers, assigned to the 307th Expeditionary Signal Battalion, 516th Sig. Brigade, 311th Sig. Command, answered that they wanted to know about the finer points of combatives techniques, such as the elevator sweep. A few of the braver ones answer the general's challenge of taking him on.

IMCOM Commander

SMA visits Third Army Soldiers

Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond F. Chandler III visited Third Army Soldiers April 1.

During his visit Chandler briefed more than 1,000 Third Army Soldiers on upcoming changes to the Army's retention policy, the new Army Physical Readiness Test, and future alterations being implemented to the Army Combat Uniform, while receiving essential feedback from troops.

First Lady Mark’s 1-Year Point For Military Effort

Michelle Obama has been everywhere from a West Point mess hall to a NASCAR speedway in the past year to drum up support for military families, and now she's capping the yearlong effort with a two-day, four-state tour to take stock of what's been done.

Mrs. Obama is marking the anniversary of her "Joining Forces" initiative on Wednesday with a White House ceremony where she'll recognize businesses, community groups and other organizations working to help members of the armed forces, veterans and military families.

Joining Forces
Consumer Finance

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Now Taking Complaints on Checking Accounts

Recently, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) began accepting consumer complaints about bank accounts, including checking accounts, savings accounts, CDs, and related services.

“Deposit accounts play a critical role in the lives of most Americans, but these products and the laws governing them are complicated,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Consumers need someone on their side to keep banks and credit unions accountable—that is our job.”

Military Student Loan Forgiveness and Discharge Programs

More and more at, we are getting questions about how to get your student loans eliminated, forgiven, or discharged if you are in or served in the military. It is absurdly ironic that members of the military can go into harm’s way, fight in combat and yet return home only to struggle to escape the invisible bondage of student loan debt. However, there are some real options that can help you do this, but like the military, there are rules to follow and hoops to jump through.

Loan Forgiveness
Scream Free

ScreamFree Class Makes Difference in Reaction to Children's Behavior

Parents looking for tips on how to better raise their children received that information during a ScreamFree parenting class.

The class, hosted by the Family Advocacy Program, focused on parents keeping a calm demeanor in their dealings with their children so they can stay fully connected and involved in the situation.

James Patterson Donates 200,000 Books to US Troops

If James Patterson thought it were possible, he'd shake the hand of every U.S. soldier. For now, he'll let a big bundle of his novels do the talking.

The million-selling author is donating 200,000 copies of his work to the U.S. Armed Forces, continuing a tradition he started in 2006. Through such charitable organizations as Operation Gratitude and Books for Heroes, 20,000 cartons of books -- 10 books per carton -- are being shipped and distributed worldwide.

James Patterson
Road Rageous


Roadrageous is an eight-hour classroom course addressing the root causes of aggressive driving. Produced by the American Institute for Public Safety, the training combines instruction, skits, games, videos, student-instructor interaction and student-student interaction to help drivers acknowledge their negative driving habits and attitudes. The goal is to give students a toolkit to change their behavior and decision-making process behind the wheel.

Fort Meade Students join First Lady at Mini-Olympics

After leaving a meeting at Manor View Elementary School on March 8, Principal Donna O'Shea was told that she had received a phone call from the office of the first lady.

O'Shea called back and was told that the school was invited to represent Maryland at a mini-Olympic competition that would be hosted by Michelle Obama, March 13.

Fort Meade Students
Student Soldiers

Seventh-graders Become Soldiers for a Day

One day, you're a seventh-grader. The next day, you're a Soldier -- well, temporarily, that is.

Students at Monsignor James J. Haddad Middle School were beginning to study the Civil War when their gymnasium was invaded March 30 by six Soldiers from the nearby Natick Soldier Systems Center, who brought history to life for a few hours.

Army Aims to Grow More Resilience Trainers on its Own

About 8,000 Soldiers are now trained as "master resilience trainers," or MRTs, and the Army wants even more, but it hopes to train them in an Army school.

The MRT course is a "teaching the teachers" type of training. The noncommissioned officer, or NCOs, who attend the course go back to their home units and teach resilience to their own Soldiers. Right now, Soldiers are getting the MRT course in Philadelphia, at the University of Pennsylvania. The Army is going to change that, said Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond F. Chandler III.

Resiliency Training
Alcohol Awareness

National Alcohol Screening Day

National Alcohol Screening Day is an annual outreach, education and screening program held on Thursday of the first full week of April as part of National Alcohol Prevention Awareness Month. U.S military installations, along with thousands of colleges and community-based organizations, recognize the day by hosting programs meant to raise awareness about alcohol misuse and refer individuals with abuse concerns for further treatment.

Alternative Resources to TRICARE’s Assistance Program

The web-based TRICARE Assistance Program (TRIAP) demonstration ended on March 31, 2012. Although TRIAP no longer provides information, counseling and referral services, other resources are available to support warriors and families experiencing psychological health concerns. For example, service members, veterans and families can access 24/7 support through the Real Warriors Campaign live chat available through the Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) Outreach Center.

Contact a health resource consultant through the Real Warriors Campaign live chat, by calling 866-966-1020 or emailing


Soldiers Qualify Team USA for Olympics in Greco-Roman wrestling

Two U.S. Army World Class Athlete Program wrestlers qualified their Greco-Roman weight classes for Team USA to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games.

Sgt. 1st Class Dremiel Byers and Sgt. Spenser Mango accomplished their mission by reaching the finals at the FILA Pan American Olympic Games Qualifying Tournament March 23-25, at Silver Spurs Arena.

Smartphone Application Benefits Wounded Warriors

A new smartphone app has been released for iPhone and Android devices that provides wounded warriors with a comprehensive mobile resource guide.

Based on "The Wounded, Ill and Injured Compensation and Benefits Handbook" that was released November by the Department of Defense, the free app gives wounded and ill service members and their families access to vital information on the go.

Smartphone App
Shipping Pets

U.S. Army Soldier Show Kicks Off

Although the newly renovated Fort Sam Houston Theatre played host to Operation Rising Star, a jazz show, and several town hall meetings, Army Entertainment officials like to consider opening weekend of the 2012 U.S. Army Soldier Show as the theatre’s grand reopening.

“It was made into a television set and there was a jazz show, but this is the first large-scale touring production that’s going to be in here,” artistic director Victor Hurtado said of the 7 p.m. performances scheduled for April 19, 20 and 21. “And it happens to be the U.S. Army Soldier Show.”