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Support for the military usually shows up in shades of red, white and blue. Not Monday.

Monday it was all about wearing purple for military children.

Army green, Air Force and Navy blue, Marine red and the Coast Guard, too. Swirl them together, and the color comes out purple.

It adorned almost every student at Rice Elementary Monday.

Bibb County Coordinator for Operation Military Kids Alesia Rice said, "It is very rewarding for me, seeing the children's faces today, was just really great."

She praised Principal Iwanda Dickey for pushing for the purple tide.

Dickey said, "I didn't have any idea we would have that many students wearing purple today, but I'm just so proud."

The grape-colored tint honors all the children with military parents. It's aimed at bringing attention to the hardships they face.

Reginald Sams, a volunteer with Operation Military Kids, knows those issues well.

Sams said, "I remember being one of those elementary kids during parent week, and I would just have my mom there, and not my father, because he would be away fighting."

There's also multiple moves, new friends and anxiety about a parent's return.

There's one good thing; a lot of pride.

Just ask twins Markell and Malik Thomas about their dad. Malik said, "He's fighting four our life, our country."

Sams said, "It makes me feel proud that hey, my dad is fighting for that. I have this type of freedom, because of my father and other people's parents."

Operation Military Kids is program of Georgia 4-H. In addition to organizing 'Purple Up' Day, the program sends military kids to summer camps and makes "hero packs", or goodie bags, for them while parents are deployed.

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