Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders visit CAFB families during USO tour
By Airman 1st Class Keith Holcomb, 14th Flying Training Squadron Public Affairs
/ Published December 08, 2017
COLUMBUS AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. --
Members of the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders visited Columbus Air Force Base Dec. 4 where they were given a flight line tour, did a meet-and-greet at the Exchange, were shown a military working dog demonstration and conducted a Cheer to Fitness Clinic for children at the Youth Center.
Ten members of the squad were selected to participate in a USO tour across U.S. Air Force bases throughout the winter holidays.
“Our goal is to really spread Christmas cheer and visit families who have members that may be deployed,” said Simone, Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. “Another aspect of these visits are to help promote fitness to all the families.”
She said this opportunity is an honor because every year only about a third of the 34 members are chosen.
“Being able to meet the kids, but also the spouses that are home with service members deployed make this trip such an honor for me,” sad Savannah, Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader. “People often forget the sacrifices the family members at home make, so getting to see and speak with the spouses was an amazing thing.”
Members of the squad said they appreciate the work and sacrifice the military and families make and that’s a driving force for this 82nd USO organized tour.
“I used to get handwritten letters from my father when he was deployed but it was hard because you’re wondering if they’re OK and the family is kind of stressed out,” said Savannah, whose father was also a member of the armed services. “I love that this organization [the USO] is so supportive of the military and that’s what stood out to me because of my background with a military family.”
During their tour of the flight line, the cheerleaders were briefed on the 14th Flying Training Wing’s mission, were shown the aircraft and met with Airmen who support the mission on a daily basis. Then they were shown flight simulators and got to gear up, fly and communicate within the simulators, similar to what student pilots do every day.
“The big thing was to show them what the mission of Columbus Air Force Base is and show them how the pilots are trained,” said Capt. James Couch, 49th Fighter Training Squadron Assistant Upgrading Instructor Pilot Flight Commander. “We wanted them to experience a little of what Air Force pilots are going through, so getting them in the G-suits, explaining what everything is, letting them fly simulations, it is to give visitors a perspective on what is going on here.”
Finally, the group led a fitness clinic at the Youth Center, engaging with the children and bringing a once-in-a-lifetime experience to them.
“We want to try and teach the kids about nutrition and health, dedication, character and community,” Simone said. “We talk to them about each quality and why those aspects are important along with fitness.”
The cheerleaders will continue their tour and also spread their messages to families and service members around the globe.
“It was great to have them here,” Couch said. “It’s great to see people and work with people who care about the military who will take time out of their day to work with us and thank us, so it’s nice to help them as well and educate them on what we do and thank them for giving such a large amount of support.”