2010 Military Fatherhood Award™
We are pleased to announce the winner of the 2010 Military Fatherhood Award™, presented by TriWest Healthcare Alliance and Lockheed Martin: Master Sergeant Rick Marston of the U.S. Air Force.
Few things can touch the heart of a father more than hearing his children say, “When I grow up, I want to be like Daddy!” Described as the “go-to NCO” (non commissioned officer) by his superiors, Master Sergeant Rick Marston has established a reputation for excellence during his 17-year career in the U.S. Air Force. But, to 10-year-old Jake and 6-year-old twins Tyler and Brandon, Rick has established a reputation as a super hero dad and their “go-to” guy for learning what it means to be a gentleman, a friend, a hard worker, a father, a husband, and a good citizen.
From the time his sons were born, Rick immersed himself in their development—reading with them, helping with homework, playing games, going on adventures, giving presentations at their school (on being an Airman), taking them to doctors appointments, and using every opportunity to teach life lessons. As his responsibilities in the military have increased, Rick has worked hard to juggle his schedule so he can continue giving his sons the time, love, and guidance they need, often going into work early or on the weekend so he can attend sporting events and school activities.
Rick also works hard to ensure his presence is felt during deployments and his relationships with wife
Jean and the boys continue to grow. Before departure, Rick makes videotapes of himself reading bedtime
stories so the boys can maintain one of their favorite “daddy-time” activities; the family celebrates
holidays and birthdays that Rick will miss while deployed; and Rick makes arrangements with family
and friends to check on Jean and the boys regularly and provide help as needs arise. During deployment,
Rick maintains steady contact with Jean and the boys—using Skype, email, and text messaging—in order
to stay in tune to what’s happening in their lives.
Rick has also become a “go-to” guy for other military families. As a role model and counselor to young
Airmen, Rick teaches other fathers and husbands how to handle the unique stresses of military life and
makes himself available to talk at all hours. He plans family events for his squadron and constantly
reinforces to those in authority the importance of providing support for military families.
Perhaps nowhere does Rick’s character shine brighter than in his relationship with his teenage stepbrother
Matt. After the death of Matt’s parents, Rick stepped in to be a father figure in Matt’s life. He
invited Matt to live with his family, taught him how to drive, helped him find a part-time job, and showed
him how to handle finances. With Rick’s guidance, Matt has become a very successful college student.
For his ongoing commitment and dedication to his wife (Jean), children (Jake, Tyler, and Brandon),
and step-brother (Matt); for his extraordinary efforts to father from a distance during deployment; for
successfully balancing a thriving military career with a busy family life; and for his efforts to mentor and
strengthen other military fathers and children, National Fatherhood Initiative is thrilled to honor Master
Sergeant Rick Marston with the 2010 Military Fatherhood Award™.