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I’m sending in a picture of me and my daughter during her battle with cancer. Why? Because it was during this period that my role as a single, military mom stationed OCONUS during COVID became even more apparent and vital. Due to the UK’s COVID lockdown and how fragile my daughter’s health was at that time she was diagnosed, we had to do an Exceptional Family Member Program deferment to stay in place for her care at the closest off-base hospital. The lockdown prevented our family from coming into the country to assist. That is where my amazing flight and military and government leadership stepped in and up in every way imaginable. Their continued support throughout her 2.5-year battle gave me the added strength I needed. During one of her chemo sessions, we were sporting the t-shirts my flight (Medical Information Services) made for us. At the time I was the 48th Medical Support Squadron Medical Information Services Flight Chief. TRICARE came through for us, too. Not the usual comment you hear, I know. But they made sure she received everything she needed to get better. For that I am eternally thankful. You never truly realize until your children are in a life-or-death situation what you are willing to do or go without to save them. Or the number of tears you will shed unbeknownst to them, praying for a miracle. On 15 Feb 2023 we received notification that her cancer is in remission! More mom tears shed, only happy ones this time! U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Deborah Iraheta, Flight Chief, Information Services & ITU, 59th Training Support Squadron, Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston.

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Last Updated: July 11, 2023
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