Military Family Shares How They Were Welcomed to Bossier With Open Arms

Has it been awhile since you heard a good local love story? Prop your feet up and get cozy. This is going to be a good one!

Austin and Crystal Lohman are a relatively new military family in Bossier Parish with their love story beginning in the Bahamas. That’s right! The Bahamas. With only eight hours left of his vacation to spare, Austin met his future bride who was staying at the same resort. Major Lohman had to leave paradise, but was so taken with Crystal that he flew his private plane back to the Bahamas to visit her for the duration of her trip. After the couple spent some time together, they soon married and settled in Haughton when Austin was stationed at Barksdale Air Force Base.

First time mother-to-be Crystal shared her experiences thus far in their new town and what she is looking forward to with her little one in tow. The South is known for being warm and welcoming. That’s just how Crystal described her transition to Haughton. The Lohmans were inundated with housing resources and referrals as well as with open hearts and homes from people in the community. They now even have a “gift family” with whom they celebrate the holidays.

Barksdale AFB has played a major role in easing the transition of a move across the country for the Lohmans.

“Anything you need for your emotional and physical well-being is provided – counseling, child care, medical and help with deployment,” Crystal said.

Barksdale has programs for mothers such as Bundles for Babies which provides parenting classes and it also offers a myriad of clubs which raise money for charities and scholarships.

The ample opportunities to connect with the local community provided through Barksdale and the area in general are a big reason the Lohmans have been able to adjust so quickly. While Austin is serving our country on base, Crystal is working away at her own company, Viva, LLC. It is a professional non-profit fundraising and publicity company. Through Viva, she’s been able to teach various yoga classes including social yoga events. As a self-proclaimed “newbie in the community,” Crystal said everyone she’s come in contact with has been welcoming and hospitable.

Welcoming a New Addition

Bossier Parish Schools was recently named an “A” ranking school district and that certainly made an impact on the Lohmans.

“When we moved here, we had no kids,” Crystal said. “When we chose our home, we chose a home in a good school district. I’ve always been a strong advocate for public schools. As a military family, I think it’s great to be able to give our children access to that kind of opportunity.”

Baby Lohman is sure to be welcomed into Bossier schools with the same warm welcome her parents received upon moving here.

Bahamas, Barksdale, Bossier, Baby: It appears Austin and Crystal Lohman have a pattern going and it sure looks like a happy one. True Southern hospitality is what it takes to help military families adapt to a new part of the country at Barksdale. Lohman Family, the people of Bossier are thankful for your service. We are thrilled to help you live out your own happily ever after right here in Bossier Parish.

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