Alaskans Shine as “Families of the Year” by Uniformed Services

Murkowski Meets, Congratulates the 2 of 7 Nationally-Recognized Families from 49th State

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski is pleased to honor two deserving Alaskan families chosen by their Uniformed Service as a “2011 Family of the Year.” Yesterday at a Washington, D.C. ceremony, the two families were among only seven nationwide to be named outstanding: the Henley family of Sitka, and Thompson family of Eagle River.

“It’s statistically amazing that two of the seven Families of the Year were from Alaska, but not surprising when you consider the close bonds our Alaskan communities share with the Uniformed Services,” Murkowski said.  “These awards exemplify the fact that while the service member wears the uniform, it is the entire family who serves.”

The Henley family from Sitka is the United States Coast Guard Family of the Year.  Petty Officer First Class Javon Henley and his wife Keysha are leaders and role models in their community, contributing to civic organizations, tutoring, and participating on the board of the Coast Guard Spouses Association.  Children Jaelah and Keyshawn are active in sports and Scouting, and recently organized a fundraiser to aid those affected by the tsunami in Japan.

The Thompson family from Eagle River is the United States Public Health Service Family of the Year.  Commander Susan Thompson and her husband Lieutenant Commander Jasen Thompson speak and volunteer at the local school’s health and science fair and encourage young students to take an active role in their own health.  Children Abigale, Samuel, and Joshua are active in Scouting and Little League Baseball.  As a family, the Thompsons devote time to collect and distribute food to local charities and participate in improvement projects in their community.

Attached is a photo of Sen. Murkowski with the Thompson family.