Photo Information

Col. Christopher E. O'Connor, the station's commanding officer, presents a piece of aviation artwork to Maria Shriver, the first lady of California, along with Cathe Robling, wife of Maj. General Terry G. Robling. Shriver visited the station for a parent resource fair in celebration of California's Family Week.

Photo by Cpl. Jessica Aranda

First Lady of California visits Miramar

25 Sep 2008 | Cpl. Jessica Aranda

Maria Shriver, the first lady of California, visited the air station for “We are Family: A Parent-Resource Fair,” at The Hub here Sept. 25.

More than 300 parents and 30 vendors participated in the resource fair, which included prize-giveaways and hundreds of free products.

“The School-Liaison Program is dedicated to providing families and students with information and resources to promote academic success,” said Janine Koffel, a school liaison here. “Our many partners in (this) event addressed a wide range of issues from nutritious meals, to safety, deployments and military life.”

During the resource fair, Shriver talked with Marines and their spouses to share experiences and discuss ways to improve life for military families.

“I wanted to come here to support the families with services, gifts, phone cards and to connect with the spouses, particularly women and let them know about the resources available” said Shriver.

The spouses were invited to talk with Maria at Stateside Café, during a “Morning Coffee with Maria” session. Over lattés, the ladies chatted about school life for military children, grading scales and the process of transferring schools.

The families also discussed creating counseling services and support groups at school sites, while Maria provided recommendations on how to be proactive and accomplish their goals.

The attendees enjoyed a catered lunch and left the event with free tote bags of groceries, T-shirts, cook books and family emergency kits.

“I think this was a great event,” said Cpl. Austin W. Evans, a warehouse clerk with Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 3, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, who attended the event. “It’s nice to see the military is placing a strong emphasis on the importance of families.”