Injured veteran competes in Marine Corps Marathon

December 5, 2011
Daily Courier photo of Michael Blair

Retired U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Michael Blair, an Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University student, rode as part of Team Semper Fi during the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C.

By Lisa Irish | Prescott Daily Courier | Dcourier.com | December 4, 2011

About 4 miles into the Marine Corps Marathon, Michael Blair of Prescott saw another injured veteran like himself having an issue with a derailleur on his bike so he stopped to help him out.

Then Blair helped fix a chain that cut a slot three-quarters of the way through another Wounded Warrior's seat post during the Oct. 30 race in Washington, D.C.

"Later, a cyclist I'd helped out earlier gave me a push when I needed it," said Blair, a sophomore at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, who rode his bike with Team Semper Fi.

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About Town: Remembering Jessica

September 8, 2011
Jessica Shepherd by Patch 8.8.11

Marine Jessica Shepherd. Photos provided by Lexington Patch.

By Denise J. Dubé | Lexington Patch | Lexington.Patch.com | September 8, 2011

You now have new orders to protect heaven’s shores.
Carry out the plan of the day.
Semper Fi. – Diana Buckley’s eulogy to her daughter.

Jessica Shephard died on Sept. 3, 2011. She was only 31, which isn't long enough for any parent, spouse, sibling or child.

Staying or leaving isn’t our call, no matter how hard we fight.

According to her brother-in-law, Raymond Santos, who spoke on behalf of the family, Jessica was an extraordinary woman who accomplished more in her short 31 years than most could in three lifetimes.

Her obituary states she was born Jessica Colleen Buckley, the daughter of Edward and Diana, formerly of Lexington, but now of Londonderry, NH. She was a Marine who married Staff Sgt. Brandon Shepherd and a devoted and dedicated sister to Danielle Santos. In July 2010, she gave birth to Keegan Edward Shepherd. Read the rest of this entry »

Wounded in Iraq: A Marine’s Story

Marine photo by Atlantic News 8.8.11
September 6, 2011

By Justin Constantine | The Atlantic | TheAtlantic.com | September 6, 2011

I cry whenever I think of a memorial service I attended in Iraq. From the back of the hot, packed room next to the chaplain's office, I looked down the center aisle and saw six sets of boots, rifles, helmets, and dog tags. Six Americans had lost their lives defending their country. I had seen these Marines hug each other before heading out on patrol -- real hugs, as if they guessed they might not see each other again. They had been in Iraq for a while and knew how dangerous every mission was. Read the rest of this entry »

Wounded Warriors participate in inaugural Cutting Horse Classic!

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July 31, 2011

Nokesville, VA -- As a part of Semper Fi Fund's new Jinx McCain Horsemanship Program for Wounded Warriors, ten select wounded Marines from the Marine Corps' Wounded Warrior Regiment will be participating in the inaugural Wounded Warrior Cutting Horse Classic at the D & M Cattle Company in Nokesville, Virginia this week. Read the rest of this entry »

Our Hero: Cpl Todd Love receives new specially adapted van!

Todd Love van presentation July 2011
July 22, 2011

Beltsville, MD — As a triple amputee, Marine Corporal (Cpl) Todd Love was not sure he would be able to drive again but now he is one step closer to overcoming that obstacle. This week Cpl Love and his family were presented with a specially adapted vehicle by the Semper Fi Fund Read the rest of this entry »

Marine Bikes 430 Miles to Give Back to Fellow Wounded Warriors

Angel Gomez Fox News 10 Phoenix 7.8.11
July 9, 2011
Angel Gomez Fox News 10 Phoenix 7.8.11

By FOX News | Foxnews.com | July 9, 2011

A Marine who nearly died in Iraq is giving back to his fellow servicemen and women by biking for the second time 430 miles from Scottsdale, Ariz., to San Diego, Calif., MyFoxPhoenix.com reported.

The annual Bike430 ride, which will be held October 12 this year, raises money for injured Marines and their families through the Injured Marine Fund.

"As long as I can ride my bike I'm going to start helping Marines and any veterans that need help," Angel Gomez said. Read the rest of this entry »

HM3 James Raffetto –” Steadfast Support” for a Hero and His Family

Raffetto James Afghanistan pre injury
June 24, 2011
Raffetto James Afghanistan pre injury

HM3 James Raffetto has an infectious passion for the Navy, the Marines, and his family.

James worked with the Marines of 1st Recon out of California and bravely supported his Marine unit in Afghanistan until he was injured himself. In August 2010, an IED blast caused injuries that resulted in the amputation of both of his legs above the knee, the amputation of his left arm at the elbow, and the amputation of three fingers on his remaining right hand. Now, not even a year since his injury, James is standing tall on his C-Legs, his newest prosthetics. They allow him to stand beside his friends and family, including his wife, Emily. Read the rest of this entry »

Cardinals Honor Injured Marines

Picture 226
June 23, 2011

By Andy Banker | KY3 TV | ky3.com | June 22, 2011

Maryland Heights, Mo. - It was all downhill for the Cardinals after Wednesday's first pitch against the Phillies at Busch Stadium, but wow, what a first pitch.

It was a night to remember at the ballpark as St. Louis celebrated Marine week. It was one of those nights where what happened during the game really didn't matter much. Read the rest of this entry »

Marine: God only reason we lived

June 21, 2011
Colte James family hattiesburg american 6.21.11

Darla Woodard, from left, Mike Woodard, U.S. Marine Cpl. Colte James and Jared James take time for a photograph on Friday at their home in Petal. Photo by Matt Bush | Hattiesburg American

By La Tonya Frelix | Hattiesburg American | hattiesburgamerican.com | June 21, 2011

The first couple days of June started out promising for Marine Cpl. Colte James. June 1 meant only two more months left of deployment for James, a Petal native, and the other members of the 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines. James, who was on his second tour in Afghanistan, was promoted June 2 to corporal. And on June 3, he celebrated his 22nd birthday - complete with a package of goodies sent from his mom.

But everything changed on June 4.

James and four other Marines were in a military vehicle when it drove over an improvised explosive device. James suffered a fractured vertebrae, cranial bleed and several bruises, but he said he and the others are expected to make full recoveries. Read the rest of this entry »

Hometown embraces wounded Marine

Reichenthal photo Boston Herald 5.29.11
May 29, 2011
Reichenthal photo Boston Herald 5.29.11

'OVERWHELMING’: Evan Reichenthal relaxes in his room in Princeton yesterday during the Marine lance corporal’s first trip home since he was injured in Afghanistan. Photo by Chitose Suzuki/Boston Herald

By Renee Nadeau Algarin | Boston Herald | BostonHerald.com | May 29, 2011

A Princeton Marine seriously injured in Afghanistan made his first trip home in nearly six months just in time to be honored in his hometown’s Memorial Day parade.

“It’s been long awaited. Being home is a very far-fetched idea when you’re in the hospital going through surgery almost every day,” said Evan Reichenthal, 20. The Marine lance corporal had been in Marjah, Afghanistan, for only six weeks when he was injured by an improvised explosive device while on a foot patrol. He remained conscious as he was thrown 20 feet, suffering injuries that cost him his right leg as well as causing burns, ligament damage and severe nerve damage. Read the rest of this entry »

Catching up with Cpl Rob Jones

Rob Jones Photo Nov 2010
May 26, 2011

We recently checked in with Marine Corporal Rob Jones to see how he was doing. Rob told us, "I continue to strive to set a good example and a high standard of work for others to follow, and work my hardest to get to the level of those that are even higher than I am." Read the rest of this entry »

Holland Marine Veteran Competes In U.S. Warrior Games

Lee Randles photo small
May 25, 2011

By Karen Berger | Mirror Reporter | TheMirrorReporter.com | May 26, 2011

Whether on the track, the basketball court, on horseback or in water, U.S. Marine Sgt. Lee Randles doesn't let his prosthetic leg stop him.

I haven't found a sport that I haven't been able to play," Randles said. “Although when I play basketball, I'm pretty energetic and some of the guys are scared they will be hit by my leg.” Read the rest of this entry »

Cpl Jose “Daniel” Gasca to receive new specially adapted home

Gasca Family
April 27, 2011

El Paso, TX --- On Friday, April 29, 2011 at 8:30 am Homes for Our Troops, Inc. will be kicking off a 3-day "Build Brigade" in which hundreds of volunteers will begin construction on a specially adapted home for injured El Paso Marine, Corporal Jose "Daniel" Gasca and his family.

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Team Semper Fi member Corey Petersen crowned Ms. Wheelchair California 2011

Corey Petersen Ms Wheelchair 2011 THUMB
April 26, 2011

Congratulations Corey! Team Semper Fi member and Semper Fi Fund Community Outreach Coordinator, Corey Petersen recently won the 2011 Ms. Wheelchair California in Los Angeles. Along with winning the title, she also won Ms. Congeniality, and is the first Veteran to hold the title of Ms. Wheelchair California. Read the rest of this entry »

Marine Sgt Kenny Lyon receives keys to new home

Kenny Lyons homecoming
April 14, 2011

Fredericksburg, VA - On April 9, 2011 the Semper Fi Fund was honored to be a part of the home dedication for Sgt Kenny Lyon, USMC. Sgt Lyon was presented the keys to a specially adapted home from Home for Our Troops. The Semper Fi Fund provided a grant of $25,000 toward the construction of the home and also presented a new hand-controlled riding lawn mower to Sgt Lyon at the ceremony! Read the rest of this entry »