By Joseph Andrew Lee

While NFL players checked in at training camps across the U.S., newly-retired Pro Bowler Steve Smith Sr. and his 12-year-old son checked in at Camp Humphreys in South Korea, where they spent the weekend playing football with about 150 military children.

Presented by USO partner Procter & Gamble and coordinated through the Defense Commissary Agency, ProCamps are summer sports camps for military boys and girls in first through eighth grades that are hosted at military bases around the world.

“We were in Tokyo before this and Hawaii before that,” Smith said, naming 11 other installations where he took part in ProCamps this year. “It’s a great chance to bond with my son while connecting with military families living overseas.”

During the two-day camp, Steve Smith Sr. and his son interacted with campers and practiced fundamental football skills through activities designed to give kids an experience in every position on the field.

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Military kids enjoyed Football ProCamp at USO Humphreys with former NFL player Steve Smith Sr.

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Military kids enjoyed Football ProCamp at USO Humphreys with former NFL player Steve Smith Sr.

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Military kids enjoyed Football ProCamp at USO Humphreys with former NFL player Steve Smith Sr.

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Military kids enjoyed Football ProCamp at USO Humphreys with former NFL player Steve Smith Sr.

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Military kids enjoyed Football ProCamp at USO Humphreys with former NFL player Steve Smith Sr.

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Military kids enjoyed Football ProCamp at USO Humphreys with former NFL player Steve Smith Sr.

“The camp, it’s for their kids, but it’s also a cool experience for me and my family, learning how they go about their day,“ said Smith, who went on a USO-NFL tour in 2013. "You don’t get to come into their world that often.”

Smith, who said his family has served in every major American war, says he likes to bring his son along because he wants to close the gap between military and civilian families and he wants to teach his son that “freedom isn’t actually free.”

“I want him to grow up with the knowledge that men and women are sacrificing their lives right now thousands of miles from home and they work twelve-, fifteen-, sometimes sixteen-hour shifts,” he said. “The USO does such a great job bridging the gap between civilian life and military life. They are that much-needed middle man, and … civilians have no clue what they go through.”

This marks the fifth year P&G has partnered with the commissary and the USO to run the NFL Military ProCamps program, which are designed to teach the fundamentals of football, teamwork and how to make new friends. Each camper received an autograph from Steve Smith Sr., and a limited edition P&G Steve Smith Sr. Football ProCamp T-shirt.

“Some people ask what life lessons these boys and girls are learning out here,” Smith said. “It’s summer time. There’s no life lesson. They are just getting out here having fun.”

You can send a message of support and thanks directly to service members via the USO’s Campaign to Connect. Your messages will appear on screens at USO locations around the world.