2016-2017 Headlines

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VFW POST 1799 held and raised $4,000 for TXWWF

V F W POST 1799, Rhones Quarter Road, celebrated their 75th year in Tyler with a Crawfish Boil fundraiser to benefit the Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation, raising $4,000.

(2740 no leídos) - lisss_90@yahoo.es - Yahoo Mail Many thanks to V F W POST 1799!

Photo from left to right: Dick Goetz, Doug Hannah, Dale Mark and Fred Lancaster.

The Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation received a combined donation of $20,000 from the 2016 MISS TEXAS USA and MISS TEXAS TEEN USA PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD!

Miss Midland - 2016 Miss Texas USA People’s Choice Award Winner

Every dollar collected from the People’s Choice Award at the 2016 Miss Texas USA and Miss Texas Teen USA Pageant in Houston went to the Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation to assist Wounded Warriors, their families, and/or caregivers from Iraq including Gulf War I and Gulf War II as well as Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. Each dollar bought one vote for one’s favorite contestant.    

A BIG THANK YOU to the following businesses and organizations who generously have raised funds thus far into the 2016 calendar year for the Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation:

  • The TXWWF was awarded a $400 donation from the staff of the Walmart Neighborhood Market, Store # 5700, located at 2151 Frankston Hwy, Tyler, TX 75701 as part of the store’s grand opening ceremonies held on January 20th.

  • The employees of Texas Farm Bureau Insurance, Region 4, competed with one another in a silent auction as part of their annual employee after Christmas get-together in late January to raise $7500 for the TXWWF.

  • The Emerald Bay Benevolence Foundation, located in Bullard, TX and founded on the idea of helping local people in need, presented the TXWWF with a $1500 donation on February 26th.  

  • Several employees of the United Way Excel Energy Tolk Station Plant in Plainview, TX contributed funds that were matched by the company.  The TXWWF was presented a check in the amount of $6810.69.

  • Nursing students from Texas Tech University conducted a t-shirt fundraiser late in the spring semester and mailed a check to the TXWWF for $588.23.  When these students knew they wanted to support a Wounded Warrior organization for this project that is located here in Texas, their online research led them to the TXWWF.  
  • Mike and Jeannette Fatherree, owners of Sunrise Lodge on Lake Fork, proudly supported the TXWWF by setting aside $25 for every reservation made until their goal of $500 was achieved. Their efforts began on April 7, and it didn't take long!  Mike, being a fourth generation Texas veteran himself, felt that taking care of our fellow veterans is priority one.  On July 4th, Ronna Morrison and Dick Goetz of the TXWWF went to the beautiful Sunrise Lodge and met Mike and Jeannette personally, and accepted their generous donation as pictured in the adjacent photo. (From left to right:  Mike, Jeannette, Ronna, & Dick.)  In addition, Sunrise Lodge will be making arrangements with the Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation to provide lodging at one of their Sunrise resorts on Lake Fork to a Texas Wounded Warrior and his family early this fall.  
  • The East Texas Cruzers raised $4,700 at its fourth annual classic car show in Chandler and presented a check for that amount to the Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation.  Pictuerd from the left to right in the adjacent photo are David Ray, Larry Stevenson, Gene Robertson, Kerry Conner, Retired U.S. Army Lt. Col. Kurt Kosmatka, Dick Goetz and Larry Rains.  Kosmatka is a Wounded Warrior and honorary member of the foundation board of directors.  The Cruzers have given more than $15,000 to Wounded Warriors over the last four years.

  • The SMU Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity held its annual Shrimpfest celebration and raised over $2000 for the TXWWF.  Pictured left to right are Noah Slusher, President Harrison McGregor, TXWWF Board Member Ron Nash, Social Chairman Aiden Schorsch, and Jackson Ritcher.  They would like for this to become an annual event to raise funds for the TXWWF.

Other News

Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation Kiepersol Estates Luncheon

The TXWWF held a luncheon at the Kiepersol Estates Restaurant on Wednesday, June 8th.  Attendees included some of the TXWWF board of directors, members of the Dew Boys of Eagle’s Bluff Country Club, Mr. Chris Cox of Veteran’s Affairs at the University of Texas at Tyler, the Hall Family of Hall Buick GMC, as well as some members of the media.   Three objectives were accomplished:  1) TXWWF Chairman Dick Goetz accepted a $10,000 donation from the Hall family,  2)  Dick and the Dew Boys presented UT Tyler with $20,000 in veterans’ scholarships, and 3)  Dick announced the details of the largest TXWWF event of the year—the upcoming Pro Am Weekend Celebration scheduled for September 30 – October 3, 2016  (further details on this event will be posted soon noted on our Programs and Events page).

The Hall family, including Jerry and Pam Hall and their son, Monte, has been a consistent supporter of the TXWWF for several years, providing vehicles for transportation during the Pro-Am Celebration, as well as dedicating the month of May to help the TXWWF at their car dealership.  During this special promotion, they reserve a percentage of the proceeds from each vehicle sold specifically for the TXWWF, and this past May was the most successful fund-raising effort they have accomplished to date.  The Halls stem from a long line of family military service members, dating to at least World War II, and are avid advocates of our men and women in uniform.        

Pictured from Left to Right Above:

  • Photo #1:  Dick Receiving the $10,000 donation from Pam Hall
  • Photo #2:  Monte, Jerry, and Pam Hall being recognized with an honorable plaque thanking them for their continued support of the TXWWF
  • Photo #3:  Monte receiving a complimentary Ping putter since he loves to play golf

The story behind how the Dew Boys got their name is somewhat unique. It all started a few years ago when several men from Eagle’s Bluff Country Club near Tyler began to meet regularly on the golf course to play a round of golf when the dew was still thick on the ground. The Dew Boys, most of whom are veterans themselves, know from experience what it’s like to fight for our nation’s freedom. After realizing that they wanted to do something special for veterans in East Texas, they decided to raise money for veterans’ college scholarships to be given to the University of Texas at Tyler. Once their money-raising efforts achieved their goal, the TXWWF matched these funds, and a check was given to Chris Cox of Veterans’ Affairs at the university to launch the Richard and Madeline Lewis Veterans Scholarship.  Wounded Warrior veterans will be given top priority as recipients of these monies to help defray the costs of their higher education that would otherwise not be covered by the GI Bill or other federal veterans programs.  In the adjacent photo, pictured left to right are Maj. Gen. Paul Landers and Richard Lewis of the Dew Boys, Chris Cox, and Dick Goetz.

Wounded Warrior Gets Custom Golf Club Fitting at PING Headquarters in Phoenix

Texas Wounded Warrior Chairman, Dick Goetz, took Wounded Warrior Randy McGinnis to PING headquarters in Phoenix May 10-12.  Dick has taken several Wounded Warriors for this special club fitting for several years now, and is a trip that he most enjoys. PING provides a personal club fitter and keeps a record of the specifications of each fitting.  James Lee, on the left of the adjacent photo, served in the USAF and has worked for PING for the last ten years.  Randy, on the right, is stationed at Lackland AFB in San Antonio and is still on active duty with his wife, Krista.  In an ironic twist of fate, as James and Randy got to know each other, they discovered they had a common bond reaching beyond the AF--Randy found out that the person he plays golf with every Saturday is actually James' best friend!  The cliche' "it's a small world, afterall," definitely applies to this happenstance!  James gave his best friend a call, and they all had a three-way conversation to discuss their new-found connection.  It was really a great trip...

Kyle Field Day at Texas A&M

The TXWWF teamed up with the Kappa Delta Sorority to man a booth at the Texas A&M Kyle Field Day on Saturday, April 23.  Many corps, along with volunteers and various booth visitors came and wrote Thank You notes to our troops serving overseas.  They managed to complete about 200 cards.  Board member Lily Garst was privileged to get to meet with Patriot Paws, a dog training group which provides service dogs to assist veterans, located in Rockwall, TX. We found out that it costs $27,000 to train a dog for service, and that veterans who get a dog from this institution pay nothing.  Funds are covered through donations, corporate sponsors, etc.  Lily also met with four separate horse training camps that are based in College Station that provide Equestrian therapy for veterans who are recovering from PTSD and other wounds of combat.  

Lily Garst (far left) with representatives of the Kappa Delta Sorority

Lily with Reveille

Fort Hood Terror Attack Victims Receive the Texas Purple Heart

On March 11, many from around the state and the nation, totaling approximately 800 people, gathered in Kileen, TX to honor victims of the Fort Hood Terror Attack on November 5, 2009.  That tragedy wounded 31 people and took the lives of 13 others.   Texas Governor Greg Abbott awarded the Texas Purple Heart to families of the fallen and pinned the medals onto soldiers who survived the tragedy.  SFC Paul Martin, a close friend of the Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation and two-time guest of the TXWWF Pro-Am Weekend Celebration, flew in from upstate New York to receive his medal.  SFC Martin was the first person shot in the attack and received five bullet wounds. 

All recipients were awarded the federal Purple Heart in a ceremony at Fort Hood last April after winning a lengthy battle with the Department of Defense—the incident was originally classified as one of workplace violence.  It was only later called a terror attack because of an Act of Congress, which made victims eligible for the Purple Heart medal, an honor bestowed strictly to those killed or wounded in combat.  The Texas Purple Heart is similar but it does not carry the medical benefits of the federal Purple Heart. 

After a nearly two-hour ceremony with Gov. Abbott speaking about a minute with each family and service member as he greeted them on stage, the audience was dismissed to the nearby and newly erected Fort Hood Memorial.  Tim Hancock, Kileen’s mayor at the time of the terror attack, was charged with raising funds and organizing construction of the memorial—a $400,000 project which was paid for with donations and in-kind services—and it did not disappoint.  The complex includes a gazebo and a 13-pillar circle with the American flag at its center, displaying individual pillars representing each of the 13 people who died.  A unique bronze sculpture adorns the top of each pillar, a personal memorial that families chose to best reflect those they lost.  Survivors were overwhelmed with emotion and gratitude at the beauty of the structure and were very thankful to all those involved who helped with the project.  To view the story posted in the Kileen Daily Herald, click here, and to view pictures taken at this event, click here.

Operation Finally Home 

A ribbon cutting ceremony for a new, mortgage-free home built by Carlyle Homes in conjunction with Operation Finally Home, took place on February 25 for the family of Sgt. Patrick Rogers in Flint, TX.  Sgt. Rogers is a Wounded Warrior from the war theaters of Iraq and Afghanistan.  The TXWWF was one of several major contributors toward the construction of this home.  To see a news clip of this heart-warming story, click here

Learning About the Texas Wounded Warrior Foundation:  UT Tyler Dept. of Nursing Students Meet with Dick Goetz

As part of a class assignment, nursing students Natalia Zarnowski (left) and Heather Ferguson (right) interviewed Chairman, Dick Goetz about the TXWWF and what we are doing to assist Wounded Warriors all across the State of Texas.