During his stint in the U.S. Army, singer-songwriter Craig Morgan spent 10 years on active duty in the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions. Throughout his music career, the Tennessee native has kept visiting military installations during USO tours and other activities for the troops and their families.
He recently returned to Fort Campbell, Ky., where military spouses, USO volunteers and employees of Jack Daniel’s gathered for the Toast to the Troops event to assemble 10,000 packages to send to those serving overseas. The packages contained prepaid international calling cards, toiletries, sunscreen, playing cards, disposable cameras and snacks.
As part of his support for the program, Morgan provided a concert for the workers. In a CMT Insider report, he talks about the inspiration he receives from interacting with the troops and their families.
“What it means to be at an event like this is really beyond words,” he said. “Having been a soldier, been in the military for so long, that’s still a part of who I am. But I can’t go out there and put the uniform on or go back to Afghanistan and do what I did, so this is a way for me to do that. And I’ve gotta tell you that this is one of the most humbling experiences that we have — to see the spouses and family members coming in with such excitement and so proud and packing these bags. …
“More so than any other thing we get to do, this event really shines a lot of light on the spouses and family members that are back home because they’re serving just as much. … It’s just as difficult, and a lot of the family members are having to pick up all these additional duties that their spouses were doing when they were home. So, it’s a very tough time. It’s a tough separation. But I’ve gotta tell you, nothing is more rewarding than seeing the pride in these family member’s faces. They can’t express it enough, and they take on all these additional duties with pride.”