Breaking the Roles: Chaplain David Sparks

David Sparks (l) is one of five chaplains supporting the community at Dover Air Force Base.

Continuing this week’s HuffPost Impact series “Breaking the Roles” is today’s profile of David Sparks, a long-time reserve chaplain who was called into active duty in the period after September, 11, before retiring in 2007 and staying on as a civilian chaplain at Dover Air Force Base.

“What an honor to work with these folks who are doing a duty that really can’t be described or imagined,” he told Huffington Post’s Jonathan Daniel Harris. “To keep them as healthy as possible as they do their work — it’s a huge privilege, it’s what called me to the ministry 30 years ago. Every day I walk away feeling fulfilled. Exhausted, but fulfilled.”

Click here to read the full interview and take a moment to watch a short video made at Dover AFB late last year…

Breaking the Roles: Chef Michael Deihl

U. S. Army Sergeant Sherree Vannoy, 28, from New York City is served lunch by USO Volunteer Larri Milligan the Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport USO on Feb 14 as part of the Operation Chefs Unite Valentine's Day buffet. (USO Photo by Michael Clifton)

Continuing this week’s HuffPost Impact series “Breaking the Roles” is today’s profile of Michael Deihl, the Executive Chef at the East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Georgia, and one of the founders of Operation Chefs Unite.  OCU is an ongoing partnership between the Greater Atlanta Chapter of the American Culinary Federation and USO of Georgia to feed Troops traveling through the Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta.

The interview shows that preparing meals for service members is about much more than just food: “Deihl’s favorite holiday to feed the troops is Christmas. Each December 25, Deihl rises at 4 a.m., ‘getting up when Santa’s just putting his sleigh away,’ to prepare a lavish traditional feast for soldiers. Deihl says, ‘I never felt the spirit of Christmas. I thought I did, but I never felt it until I started getting up early to feed the soldiers.’”

Click here to read the full interview!

You can also follow HuffPoImpact on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.  And let us know what you think of the series!

Breaking the Roles: Dave Gatley

Photojournalist Dave Gatley snapped this great audience picture during rock band Drowning Pool's USO/AFE concert in Kuwait on August 10, 2006.

Continuing this week’s HuffPost Impact series “Breaking the Roles” is today’s profile of Dave Gatley, a prolific USO photographer and Army photojournalist.

Gatley had this to say to Jonathan Daniel Harris: “It takes a big team to do what we do, and I’m a small cog in that wheel, but happy as I can be to professionally put a face on all that I see. I’m a visual storyteller, and this work is a storyteller’s dream.”

Click here to read the full interview!

You can also follow HuffPoImpact on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.  And let us know what you think of the series!

Breaking the Roles: Jeffrey Ross

Jeffrey Ross entertains the troops at an USO show on Bagram Air Field, August 19, 2005. (U.S. Army photo by SPC Joshua Balog)

“Through Independence Day, HuffPost Impact is running a series of stories called “Breaking the Roles,” highlighting the servicemen and women of our armed forces who don’t typically see the media spotlight, and the remarkable work of the USO, who are tireless in their efforts to support all who defend our country.”

We’re thrilled to announce this six-part series,  running online at the Huffington Post‘s in partnership with Causecast, that tells untold stories of those who support our men and women in uniform!  Check back each day to see the latest interview.

Today kicks off with a hilarious interview of Jeffrey Ross, by Jonathan Daniel Harris.  Ross is a longtime supporter of the USO and the military.  His directorial debut, “Patriot Act: A Jeffrey Ross Home Movie” captured his own life changing experience traveling on a USO tour and entertaining American soldiers stationed around Iraq during the early days of the war.  It screened at many top festivals and even won Best Picture at the Montreal Comedy Festival.  Click here to read our latest blog post on Jeffrey Ross and be sure to follow him on Twitter.

You can also follow HuffPoImpact on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.  And let us know what you think of the series!

Huffington Post and Causecast Team Up to Support the USO!

Participants prepare Care Packages on Capitol Hill.

Causecast in conjunction with their partner Huffington Post, has created “The Goods,” (aka The Last Minute Gifts that Give Back Store) a virtual pop up store that will be displayed on Huffington Post starting today and running through the new year.  There shoppers will find a wide array of last-minute gift options that encouraging meaningful purchases, including the USO Care Package and Phone Card programs!  Gifts can be purchased in the name of a loved one or for one’s self, and acknowledgement gift cards will be sent to both purchasers and honorees.

We are thrilled to be a part of “The Goods” and hope you’ll take a minute to learn more about this amazing gift-giving opportunity from Arianna Huffington herself.

To learn about other USO Programs and Services, please visit our website today!