GEARKellie Pickler sits in a mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle simulator during a US
holiday tour stop at the Transit Center of Mansas, Kyrgyzstan.
Photo Credit: U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class, Tyrone C. Marshall Jr.

On Wednesday, Dec. 19, country star Kellie Pickler returned to the states from what was her sixth USO tour overseas to perform for U.S. troops as part of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey’s annual USO holiday tour.

Fun-Fest-Kellie-065Other celebrities that joined her on the seven-day, four-country tour throughout the Middle East include Ross Detwiler and Craig Stammen of the Washington Nationals, Matt Hendricks of the Washington Capitals and comedian Iliza Shlesinger. All participated in an array of hospital visits and USO meet and greets, each tailored to bring a touch of home to the servicemen and women making the biggest sacrifice. Stops included: Bagram Air Base and Kandahar Air Field in Afghanistan, U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart in Germany; and a visit with Sailors stationed aboard the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis, among other locations.

Critically acclaimed country music singer Kellie Pickler (c ), David Baker (r ) and Kyle Jacobs (l) perform a USO show for troops as part of the 2012 USO Holiday tour led by General Martin Dempsey, Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff on December 14, 2012.  Pickler along with other entertainers and athletes are making multiple stops on the week-long tour. USO photo by Fred GreavesPickler performs for troops aside back-up guitar players, her husband,
Kyle Jacobs (left) and David Michael Baker (right). Photo Credit: Fred Greaves

“It’s always different coming here this time of year,” Pickler said, prior to her performance at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan on Dec. 16.

“[During] the holidays, everyone wants to be home with their families and loved ones. And I know it’s just as hard for [your] families back home, so they’re making a sacrifice as well. I just want to say thanks so much for all that you do, and thank you to your families as they make a huge sacrifice. This time of year is really hard so I hope that you know that we love you. The USO, all of us, we are praying for a safe return home for you all. We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.”

(l-r) Washington Nationals pitcher Craig Stammen, Washington Capitols forward Matt Hendricks, comedian Iliza Shlesinger, critically acclaimed country music singer Kellie Pickler and Washington Nationals pitcher Ross Detwiler pose for a group photo on stage after a USO show for service members stationed at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan on December 15, 2012. Led by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey, the tour spans seven-days in four-countries.  USO photo by Fred GreavesFrom left to right: Craig Stammen (Washington Nationals), Matt Hendricks (Washington Capitals),
Iliza Shlesinger (comedian), Kellie Pickler and Ross Detwiler (Washington Nationals).  Photo Credit: Fred Greaves

(L-R third row) Guitarist David Baker, guitarist Kyle Jacobs, Washington Nationals pitcher Craig Stammen, Washington Nationals pitcher Ross Detwiler, Deanie Dempsey (wife of General Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff), critically acclaimed country music singer Kellie Pickler, comedian Iliza Shlesinger and Washington Capitols forward Matt Hendricks pose for a photo with a group of service members during a USO holiday tour stop on December 15, 2012.  Led by General Dempsey, the tour is visting four countries in just seven days.  USO Photo by Fred GreavesThis trip marks Pickler’s sixth USO Tour to perform and visit with troops.
Photo Credit: Fred Greaves

In addition to Kellie’s web site, where you can keep up with her tour dates and latest news, you can also check out her facebook page, and follow her on Twitter @kelliepickler.

Still very busy with holiday preparations, but I’ll be back with more as often as I can!
CountryNote

countryNewsaircraft carrier uss,iliza,kyle jacobs,michael baker,uss john c stennis,washington capitals,washington nationals
  Kellie Pickler sits in a mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle simulator during a US holiday tour stop at the Transit Center of Mansas, Kyrgyzstan. Photo Credit: U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class, Tyrone C. Marshall Jr. On Wednesday, Dec. 19, country star...