While there’s no place like home for the holidays, for most military families scattered around the globe, home is exactly where they happen to be for Christmas. Gone are the illusions of a Currier and Ives holiday. Instead, home looks like sandy beaches, flat deserts, or countries where the language sounds foreign and unforgiving. For some military families, Christmas will be celebrated when they’re together with loved ones, not on the 25th. For others, it means soaking in the culture and enjoying unfamiliar traditions. For others, it means painful loneliness. These photographs capture how military families respond to the joy of the Christmas season around the world.
They celebrate far from home.
They bring joy to children through partnerships with local schools, organizations, and groups.
They come home…bearing presents.
They carry traditions with them, no matter where they are for the actual holiday.
They join together for community events on bases.
They work together to benefit the disadvantaged.
They look out for each other.
They extend peaceful hands to allies.
They share their traditions with other cultures.
They take toys and supplies to families who live far, far away.
They keep the watch.
They decorate even the most unlikely places.
They help to spread cheer to those less fortunate.
They believe in something larger than themselves.