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273rd IOS holds third annual Family Day

A young family member scores a pie in the face of a volunteer recipient at
the 273rd Information Operations Squadron Family Day. (Texas Military Forces
photo by 2nd Lt. Jorge Rios-Feliu)

A young family member scores a pie in the face of a volunteer recipient at the 273rd Information Operations Squadron Family Day. (Texas Military Forces photo by 2nd Lt. Jorge Rios-Feliu)

SAN ANTONIO, Texas --        Finding fun for the entire family wasn't hard for 273rd Information Operations Squadron (IOS) members during the May 2009 Unit Training Assembly (UTA). Members and their families enjoyed the unit's third annual Family Day at the Randolph Air Force Base Canyon Lake Recreation Park. 
       Along with fun, squadron members and their families had an opportunity to participate in training events in a casual, scenic and relaxed environment. Capt. John Brady was the project officer for the event, which celebrated families and friends who provide unit members much support in accomplishing their goals.
       Saturday morning started with a hot breakfast followed by various training events such as wireless security, first aid/self aid and buddy care, and voice-over information processing. After lunch was served, training continued with a challenging game of Information Operations (IO) Jeopardy. Maj. Kit Howell hosted the game, in which three teams competed against each other, testing their knowledge of IO concepts and technical understanding. All training events were mandatory for unit members, but they could receive assistance from many of the more technically inclined family members participating and did very well.
       Later in the day, Staff Sgt. Lisa Brooks kicked off pie-in-the-face bidding, which raised money for the next anticipated get-together. Meanwhile, Lt. Col. David Penney and Chief Master Sgt. David Poundston, instigated a massive, all-out, no-holds-barred water fight.
  "Such activities definitely help build camaraderie among unit members and family," said Shannon Hamby, wife of Chief Master Sgt. Jon Hamby. 
  Still later in the day, Capt. Kristy Leasman and family provided a barbecue dinner. Saturday night ended with a Poker tournament fundraiser sponsored by Joe Elliott, husband of Lt. Col. Marie Elliott, 273rd IOS commander. Mrs. Hamby won this year.
  "We are having a great time," said Capt Michael Warren, who enjoyed the day with his wife and children.
       On Sunday, training events continued throughout the day. In addition, there were The Kids online class and Capt Joseph Funston's GPS (Global Positioning System) Scavenger Hunt. The GPS Scavenger Hunt taught children how to use a GPS and a map to find way points stocked with toys and candy to help "stop attacking pirates near Somalia".
       "It's always so exciting to see such a high level of unity within the squadron," said Maj Todd Eppich. Second Lt. Viet Nguyen photographed families and events throughout the day.
       Spouses also appreciated the opportunity to meet or catch up with unit members and families.  "It is a great opportunity to meet and greet other spouses, so we can form a network that would be very important when our spouses deploy," said Michelle Zissimos, wife of Capt. Tony Zissimos.
  "It's allowing my wife and children to feel a part of the unit," said Master Sgt. Ozzie Martinez.    "We enjoy great training, terrific weather, good times with friends, and have our families enjoy the UTA weekend with us," said Colonel Elliott. "And I got to see how fast the kids are growing!"