EDINBURG –Thousands of Texans have shown bravery and commitment in protecting our nation's freedom by serving in the United States Armed Forces.

The Rio Grande Valley is proud to be home to countless children whose parents serve or have served in America's military.

Adorned in purple, symbolizing the colors of all military branches, veteran Norma Longoria and her daughter Leilani accepted a proclamation declaring April as Month of the Military Child.

"This has been in the making for over three years," said Longoria. "It's extremely difficult to leave them and to not be there to comfort them. Most children have extended family close by, but military families stationed away from their hometowns don't have that."

With her child by her side, Longoria explained the hardship any Military family goes through when a parent is deployed.

"This proclamation is so important and personal to me," said Longoria. "The social and emotional well-being of children in military families is crucial to their success and has a direct impact on the family’s dynamics."

Military-connected children face unique challenges that most youth their age do not experience as a result of constant moves, having a parent that is deployed, coping with a parent who has a combat-related illness and/or injury or grieving the loss of a fallen parent.

"April tenth is Purple Up for Military Kids day," said Longoria. "On this day everyone is encouraged to wear the color purple in support of and to thank military children."

Hidalgo County Commissioners Court supports Military Children and invites the community to pay tribute to their sacrifices and encourages residents to wear purple in support of the cause.