When our General Manager, Ed Pickert, received a letter from Army Specialist, Chris Hogan, postmarked from Afghanistan, we knew we wanted to give Chris and his family something special.
Chris has spent the last four out of five years deployed, with two tours in Iraq, one in Korea and one in Afghanistan. However, he wasn’t contacting us about himself. He wanted to do something special for his wife, Shontae.
Shontae had met Chris while he was stationed in Colorado, before he was relocated to Fort Bragg. Shontae packed up her career and their daughter and followed Chris to Raleigh. When not on tour, Chris commutes to Fort Bragg daily, leaving every morning at 3:30. Chris makes this personal sacrifice to ensure his daughter receives a great education from a magnet school in Raleigh, as well as have the comfort in knowing that his parents are nearby. He even makes sure his wife has a full tank of gas before leaving for work!
Unfortunately, due to the constant traveling that comes with the military life Chris chose, he and Shontae were unable to have a honeymoon. We at Cambria Suites wanted Shontae and Chris to have this special night that both of them so truly deserved.
Although Chris will be returning to Afghanistan in two short weeks, we wanted to honor Chris and celebrate with his friends and family. On April 6, upon Chris’ arrival home, we hosted a welcome home party with his friends and family in attendance. The USO also helped us by decorating our lobby with red and blue party favors and balloons. Chris and Shontae’s family enjoyed time together with great food and great memories.
We gave Chris and Shontae a room key to one of our beautiful suites where they could finally enjoy a romantic night together. They also enjoyed our breakfast buffet with hot made-to-order items the next morning.
It truly is a blessing to have such great heroes in this country who go above and beyond to serve their local communities and their nation as a whole, as well as protect and honor their families. Chris is a great serviceman, husband, father and friend, and we were more than honored to share this special day with him.
We do hope Chris will be able to return home soon to his family, and we continue to wish Chris, his wife, daughter, family and friends the best of luck in the future. You will always be welcome at Cambria Suites!
To see even more highlights from this special homecoming, please view this short video:
Raleigh native Honored for Military Service