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Military and State leadership sign Colorado Military Family Covenant

Gina Elrod (front), wife of 140th Security Forces Squadron Master Sgt. Gregory Elrod, signs a covenant pledging the state?s support of the military community. The Elrods accepted the covenant on behalf of Colorado servicemembers and their families. Angie Yount, Military OneSource consultant with the Joint Family Support Assistance Program, worked on behalf of the Colorado National Guard to bring the covenant to fruition. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Scott Griffin, Colorado National Guard) (Released)

Gina Elrod (front), wife of 140th Security Forces Squadron Master Sgt. Gregory Elrod, signs a covenant pledging the state?s support of the military community. The Elrods accepted the covenant on behalf of Colorado servicemembers and their families. Angie Yount, Military OneSource consultant with the Joint Family Support Assistance Program, worked on behalf of the Colorado National Guard to bring the covenant to fruition. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Scott Griffin, Colorado National Guard) (Released)

Denver -- Senior leaders of the Colorado military and veterans community, members of the Colorado House and Senate, members of the state government and community members together pledged their commitment to military service members and their families with the Colorado Military Family and Community Covenant signed Jan. 30 at the State Capitol.

Lieutenant Gov. Barbara O'Brien joined the Adjutant General of Colorado Maj. Gen. H. Michael Edwards, Executive Director of the Colorado Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve Patrick O'Flaherty and military and community representatives to publicly express support of the covenant.

The covenant states in part that the Governor of Colorado is committed to supporting veteran-friendly legislation that recognizes the sacrifice and needs of service members and their families; service member and veteran access to higher education; extending employment protection and employer recognition to families; and removing barriers to military families in accessing state and local services and resources.

"The Colorado National Guard is committed to providing our Citizen Soldiers and Airmen the training, facilities and equipment they need to defend our Nation, support our communities and civil authorities, and globally combat terrorism," Edwards said. "But the Colorado National Guard's strength depends on the strength of their families. We need community and employer support to ensure that military families are taken care of."

Earlier that day, the Colorado House of Representatives passed several joint resolutions in support of military members. In Joint Resolution HJR09-1007, the members of the 67th General Assembly extended their heartfelt gratitude to our state's veterans, past and present; to all military men and women currently serving in the Armed Services and their family members; and to prisoners of war and those missing in action from previous conflicts.

Representatives and Senators also encouraged Colorado citizens to celebrate Colorado's Military, Veterans and MIA/POW Appreciation Day each Jan. 30 to recognize "The thousands of fellow citizens in the military who protect and serve their communities, state and country."

Representatives Nancy Todd and Don Marostica, and Senator Brandon Shaffer sponsored the resolution.

The second resolution, HJR019-1006, called for all Coloradoans to "remember and honor the Coloradoans who have given their lives in service to their country in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom." They also extended sympathies to the families and friends of those service members who have died. Finally, they called on citizens to honor the service and sacrifices of all Colorado service members who have served or are currently serving in OIF and OEF.

Representative Dennis Apuan and Senator Gail Schwartz were sponsors.