USO President Visits Afghanistan

In December, USO President Sloan Gibson and SVP of Operations Alan Reyes visited the Middle East, including a NATO hospital and Southwest Asian USO Centers such as recently recognized USO Kandahar! Check out some of the great pictures here and read more about the Christmas Convoy at USO.org!

Photos from the Field

Periodically, we’re bringing you the best in USO photography from around the world.  Enjoy this first installment of our photo essays!

USO Bagram held a Texas Hold 'Em tournament and this Troop kept his cards close to the vest.

The Early Show's Dave Price sports his new USO gear in style during a segment where Wounded Warriors visited the set of the show courtesy of USO Fort Drum.

Volunteers at USO Kandahar distributed Tim Horton doughnuts and muffins to hungry Troops!

USO of Indiana volunteers snapped this picture during the Blue Star Salute at Stout Field in Indianapolis. The event was conducted by American Legion Post 145.

USO of Wisconsin recently welcomed home 32nd Red Arrow IBCT - thank you for your service!

On June 18, 2010, USO Korea held a Goodwill Golf Tournament, which was a huge success for all that attended and sponsored the event. Join them in October for their Invitational!

Happy 4th of July!

Troops enjoy a BBQ at the grand re-opening of the Pat Tillman Memorial USO Center in Bagram, Afghanistan on July 8, 2009. (USO Photo by Dave Gatley)

Wherever you are this Independence Day, know that our USO Family wishes you a happy and healthy holiday!  The USO lifts the spirits of troops and their families millions of times a year at thousands of places worldwide, and we want to extend a special THANK YOU to all of those serving and all who have served.

In celebration, we’ve pulled together some of our favorite summertime and patriotic photos from the past seven decades – we hope you enjoy!

And as you gather around the grill or pull out the lawn chairs for fireworks, take a moment to remember the sacrifice of our men and women in uniform…Until Every One Comes Home.

A serviceman and USO volunteer enjoy the perfect snack on a hot day! (USO archives, date unknown)

A military spouse and her child enjoy ice cream at a USO event in the 1950s. (USO archives)

"I want to be just like you when I grow up." (USO archives)

Grilling out at a USO Center in China Beach. (USO archives)

Nigel Barker Says “Cheese” with Military Families

Renowned fashion photographer Nigel Barker stops for a photo with a local student at Leilehua High School in Wahiawa, Hawaii April 13, 2010. Barker is scheduled to visit four military schools, tour multiple military posts and provide military kids with helpful photography tips on his first-ever USO tour. (USO photo by Jackie Zettles)

Whether you’re more comfortable in front of the lens or behind the camera, giving back to the military community is always a good look.  Nigel Barker has done just that on his first USO Tour.  We brought you pics earlier this week…now see the rest below!

During the tour, Barker spent time at Hickam Air Force Base and Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe Bay, and visited four military schools.  He also flew a C17 simulator, toured the flight line and, most importantly, provided hundreds of troops and military kids with vital photography tips and words of encouragement.

Barker had this to say about touring: “I always look forward to getting involved with causes and charities I feel strongly about.  Boosting troop morale, spending time with the military community and working with the USO are things I truly believe in and firmly support.  I am excited for this opportunity and forever grateful for the service and sacrifice of America’s troops and their families.”  So are we…

Students from Leilehua High School in Wahiawa, Hawaii, display their USO memorabilia of Nigel Barker, April 13, 2010. Barker inspired two classes full of photography students with stories from his exciting career during a visit as part of a USO educational tour. (USO photo by Jackie Zettles)

Photography students at Leilehua High School pose for a photo with Nigel Barker April 13, 2010. During his time in Hawaii, Barker visited military schools, toured multiple military posts and provided military kids with helpful photography tips. (USO photo by Jackie Zettles)

Nigel Barker gets a kiss on his cheeks from two students at Radford High School in Honolulu, Hawaii, April 13, 2010. Barker is participating in his first USO tour, bringing inspirational messages to troops and their families stationed in the Aloha state. (USO Photo by Jackie Zettles)

Nigel Barker has a laugh with students at Radford High School in Honolulu, Hawaii as they turn their digital cameras on him on April 13, 2010. Barker inspired the students with messages of hope and stressed the importance of believing in their dreams. In addition to volunteering with the USO and spending quality time with military families stationed in Hawaii, Barker is also passionate about spreading his humanitarian message. (USO photo by Jackie Zettles)

Anniversary Photos – Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders

As you probably read last week on the blog, the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders are perhaps the most prolific of celebrity entertainment tour participants the USO has out there right now.  Their tireless support of Troops and families has manifest itself in 70 tours, and they show no sign of putting away their pom-poms any time soon!  Today’s anniversary photo features the cheerleaders in action during a Navy show in 1983.  Check out that view!

A view from the top, as the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders entertain in 1983.

Anniversary Photos – USO Rome Tours, a Lasting Tradition

In one of the first color photos in our Archives, a USO Volunteer is seen loading up a bus for a USO Tour in Rome, a tradition that continues to this very day!  The USO supports our Troops and their families wherever they are, whether with programs and services, celebrity entertainment, or  - tours of some of the world’s most famous historical sites.  If you’re visiting Rome soon and will be visiting the USO, be sure to check out our current tour offerings.

A tour departs USO Rome - 1975

Arrivederci!