Mother Returns from Deployment in Time for Mother's Day PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Military & Veterans News
Written by Sgt. Jesse Houk, 139th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment   
Thursday, 09 May 2013 15:07

ROCHESTER, IL (05/09/2013)(readMedia)-- The bond between a mother and her children is one of the most foundational, yet significant relationships between human beings. This connection is so profound that not even time and distance can separate a mother's love and devotion for her children.

Sgt. 1st Class Sarah J. Campbell, of Rochester, Ill., operations noncommissioned officer (NCO) of the 633rd Theater Gateway Personnel Accountability Team in Springfield, experienced this first hand when she was separated from her two children, Austin and Kiana, 10 and four respectively, while deployed to Kuwait with her unit from June 2012 to March 2013.

"I tried calling them every chance I got," said Campbell. "It was hard sometimes, hearing them continuing on with their day-to-day life and telling me their stories and what they did that day."

Campbell, nearly half the world away, relied on phone conversations and video conferencing to stay connected with her children. Campbell worked the night shift and was able to make calls on her breaks while it was daytime back home.

Campbell said she tried her best to be there for her children and admits she missed out on some things during her nine-month deployment. The most obvious to her were the physical and academic growth of her children.

The deployment was not only challenging for Campbell, but also her children.

"I really missed her," said Austin. "But I think it's cool that she's in the Army because she gets to shoot bazookas."

Although being away was difficult, the deployment to Kuwait provided Campbell time to reevaluate her priorities.

"I got to reflect a lot about my life," said Campbell. "A lot of my reflection had to do with my children. Sometimes life overwhelms you or kind of throws you off track and my deployment really helped me reflect on who I want to be as a person, a mother and Soldier."

It's difficult to balance the commitments of being a mother and Soldier, but Campbell has found a way to mesh the two. Her motherly instincts compelled her unit to give her the nickname of "mother hen" for the way she took charge during training.

"It is difficult juggling National Guard obligations with the responsibility of being a mother, but I feel they do compliment each other at times," said Campbell. "I think being a mother helps me in my role as operations NCO because it's all about taking care of people."

Campbell discovered a lot about herself while on deployment. That time was vital in defining her priorities.

"I would do anything for my children and for the military," said Campbell. "My children will always come first no matter what."

It has been said that the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. In Campbell's case, ruling the world is not an aspiration, nurturing and protecting is. As a mother first and Soldier second, she has already set a solid example of what that looks like.

Sgt. 1st Class Sarah J. Campbell, from Rochester, operations noncommissioned officer of the 633rd Theater Gateway Personnel Accountablity Team in Springfield, and her children, Kiana and Austin, have fun at the Rochester Community Park May 6 in Rochester, Ill.  Photo by Sgt. Jesse Houk, 139th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

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