Read Across America: U.S. Troops Read Stories Around the World

Story by Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Kayla Finley, Defense Media Activity

Read Across America Day kicked off Friday, March 1.  So what exactly is Read Across America Day and why is it March 1?

Read Across America Day is a nationwide observance that coincides with the birthday of an American legend in children books, Dr. Suess.  His birthday is actually March 2, but since the date falls on a Saturday this year, the nationwide reading event begins one day early.   On Read across America Day, many schools, daycares, libraries and community centers bring people together to read books and promote literacy.

Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Bryan Battaglia, senior enlisted advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and his wife, Lisa, encourage service members to observe the day, especially deployed parents who are away from their children. They can participate in the day’s reading activities via the United Through Reading program.

The United Through Reading program brings the comfort of home to deployed troops and the presence of a much missed mother or father to military kids currently experiencing a family deployment. To participate in United Through Reading, servicemen and women simply read a book aloud while being recorded on DVD.  Once finished, the DVD and book are mailed to the child and family back home.

Troops can also use the program to read to younger siblings, nieces, nephews, and other extended family members as well as to other children whom they mentor, such as students and community program members.

Whether serving overseas, on a ship or wherever you or your service member may be, the opportunity to share the enjoyment of reading is available. Find out how you or your loved one can take part in the United Through Reading program.



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