The Wall Street Journal: FBI Returns Boston Marathon Bombing Site to City

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April 22, 2013

By BEN KESLIN G | The Wall Street Journal | wsj.com | April 22, 2013

BOSTON – A week after the Boston Marathon bombings, the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Monday returned control of the crime scene to the city, as local businesses and Bostonians tried to return to normalcy.

Mayor Thomas Menino earlier announced a five-point plan to open much of the Back Bay neighborhood a week after two bombs killed three people and injured more than 170 last Monday near the marathon finish line. Authorities had cut off access to street and pedestrian traffic to a large swath of the area near Copley Square after the bombings, citing the needs of the investigation and possible contamination. Read the rest of this entry »

USA Today: Disfigured veteran deals with disrespect at home

Ronny Porta
April 22, 2013

The Semper Fi Fund is proud to support Ronny Porta on his life-long road to recovery!

By Gregg Zoroya and Alan Gomez | USA Today | usatoday.com | April 25, 2013

BELTSVILLE, MD. – Six years have passed since a roadside bomb set Ronny "Tony" Porta on fire in Iraq when he was 20, and he's still trying to find his way home.

Story Highlights boxEach reflection in the mirror bears witness to why that is not easy.

Every stranger who points or stares, every teenager who mocks with the word "monster" or couple that whisper behind his back that the disfigurement is the price for invading a country, tells Porta he hasn't quite left the battlefield behind.

"This is home for me," says Porta, 26, who grew up in suburban-Washington Beltsville after his family emigrated from Peru. "But sometimes, it's kind of hard saying, 'I am home.'"

Two months ago, a man approached Porta in a Home Depot. He stood studying the burns on Porta's face and asked if a car accident was to blame. Porta, wearing a Marine Corps sweatshirt, said, no, it was an IED explosion in Iraq. Read the rest of this entry »

Giving to Boston’s victims: How to choose a charity

April 19, 2013

By Barbara Bogaev | Marketplace | marketplace.org | April 19, 2013

Between the bombing in Boston and the deadly explosion in Texas there are hundreds of Americans still in the hospital, many of them facing large hospital and rehab costs. After tragedies like these, home-grown charities usually pop up immediately to help with expenses. Ken Berger, president and CEO of Charity Navigator, a website which ranks philanthropic organizations based on performance, joins us to talk about donating. Read the rest of this entry »

Where to donate to aid Boston Marathon bombing victims

April 18, 2013

By David Riley | Herald News | heraldnews.com | April 18, 2013

Fundraising to aid the victims of Monday’s Boston Marathon bombing continues to ramp up.
Attorney General Martha Coakley’s office has warned people to donate carefully and check out charities to make sure they are legitimate before contributing. Read the rest of this entry »

Ex-Marine to help in Boston; amputee wants to assist people who survived injuries

April 18, 2013

By PAT SCHNEIDER | The Capital Times | madison.com | April 18, 2013

B.J. Ganem of Reedsburg, seen here last September, is heading to Boston to help those who lost limbs in Monday’s Boston Marathon bombings.

The first response to the amputation of a limb in an explosion — from the devices that have injured hundreds of U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan to the bombs that took limbs from a reported 13 people at the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday — may be euphoria, B.J. Ganem of Reedsburg says. Read the rest of this entry »

America’s Fund to Aid Boston Marathon Victims, Offer Immediate Financial Support for Recovery

April 17, 2013

By Alicia Selliti | PRWeb | prweb.com | April 17, 2013

Washington, DC – In the wake of Monday’s tragedy in Boston, the nation mourns the lives we lost, and grieves for the injured and their families. These are the first days in what may be a long road to recovery; and America’s Fund will be there to help. The charity program, administered by the veteran non-profit Semper Fi Fund, will be sending staff, volunteers, and amputees wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan to Boston to provide encouragement, guidance, and immediate financial support to victims and their families. Read the rest of this entry »

CBS News segment features Semper Fi Fund

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March 21, 2013

In commemoration of the 10 year anniversary of the Iraq invasion, CBS news correspondent David Martin revisited the story of Sergeant Eddie Wright, one of the first Marines helped by the Semper Fi Fund. Eddie, a double amputee, opens up to David about the new battles he is fighting at home, and the challenges he faces both emotionally and physically on a daily basis. The Semper Fi Fund was there when Eddie was first injured in 2004 and continues to support him and his family today in a number of different ways, including counseling that saved his marriage. Read the rest of this entry »

CBS News: Wounded Iraq veteran gets by – With a little help from friends

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March 20, 2013

CBS News – Ten years ago Wednesday, U.S. ground forces began pouring into Iraq.
By the time the war was over, more than 4,000 Americans had been killed and 32,000 others were wounded.

Veteran Eddie Wright lost both his hands to a rocket-propelled grenade in Iraq in 2004. But for some veterans, there are new battles. Read the rest of this entry »

Seeking New Challenges, Infiltration Author, Lee Dodson, Takes On Fund Raising For THE SEMPER FI FUND To Help Marines

March 19, 2013

PR Web – After a stunning Underground Homeland Terrorism Survey success that produced over 14,000,000 responses, Lee Dodson, author of the novel Infiltration, has taken aim at helping the already popular SEMPER FI FUND that provides immediate financial support for injured and critically ill members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families."

“The admittedly unscientific survey was an unqualified success. It revealed that there are a lot of people out there in Internet Land who are thinking the same ideas I was, that the War on Terror is not over, that the risk is still palpable, that our first line of defense is still vital,” the writer said. “We send courageous men and women into harm’s way, and we need to be aware of it, not just the serving, but those we have sent…and their families. They are the best we have, and that’s why the SEMPER FI FUND is not just important, it’s crucial. Donations say that we don’t forget.” Read the rest of this entry »

USA Today: Ailing veterans turn to charities in record numbers

Brandon Pelletier
February 26, 2013

By Gregg Zoroya | USA Today | usatoday.com | February 21, 2013

Susan Rocco starts authorizing help on a litany of pleas from wounded Iraq and Afghanistan veterans at 7 a.m. in her home north of Quantico, Va.

One is a young Marine veteran living in a shelter who needs clothing and electricity turned on so he can go back home; another is a Marine missing a leg who visits his parents, but needs a ramp built to get into their house; and a third is hospitalized for attempted suicide and his wife needs travel money to visit him.

Rocco is eastern-region case director for the military charity Semper Fi Fund. As the hours unwind through the day, she authorizes 34 grants worth $37,000 to help dozens of current and former troops in need.

And that's just on Friday, Feb. 1. Read the rest of this entry »

Freedom Autosport Ready To Show Off The Mazda MX-5 In Austin

February 25, 2013

By PaddockTalk | paddocktalk.com | February 25, 2013

Freedom Autosport is looking forward to introducing a new group of fans to their Mazda MX-5s this weekend, when GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge has their inaugural event at Circuit of the Americas.

Rhett O'Doski and Andrew Carbonell had a strong start to the season, finishing sixth at Daytona, and they will be hoping for an even better result at Austin in the No. 26 Mazda MX-5. Derek Whitis and Tom Long, who co-drive the No. 25 Mazda MX-5, were 13th at Daytona.

"Going to a new track is always a fun challenge, and this is a great chance to not only show off what a great car the Mazda MX-5 is, but to promote the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund," says O'Doski. "We encourage veterans to stop by our pits so we can say thank you in person." Read the rest of this entry »

Marine wife runs to help wounded troops get back on their feet

February 21, 2013

By DAVID LAUDERDALE | The Island Packet | islandpacket.com | February 21, 2013

A young Beaufort couple stepped out of church to face news they instantly knew would not be good.

"We had missed text messages and phone calls from both my parents – on my phone and my husband's phone – so we knew something was wrong," Jenifer Keller said this week from her home in the Habersham neighborhood.

Keller's younger brother was then a 24-year-old Marine Corps corporal serving his third combat tour in the Middle East. Read the rest of this entry »

Meet America’s five quadruple amputees injured in Iraq, Afghanistan

January 29, 2013

The Semper Fi Fund is proud to support each of the injured service members discussed in this article. We are always excited to have others share with us in the successes of our servicemen and women as they travel along their very difficult roads to recovery. The Semper Fi Fund provides long-term assistance for life-long needs so that none of our injured or critically ill service members, like the five amazing men mentioned below, will ever be alone or forgotten.

American Homecomings | americanhomecomings.com | January 29, 2013

Early Easter morning in 2009, about 125 miles north of Baghdad, U.S. Army Sgt. Brendan Marrocco was riding in an armored vehicle that tripped a roadside explosive device.

The explosion blew Marrocco's arms and legs off, severed his left carotid artery and broke his nose, left eye socket and facial bones. It blew shrapnel into his face, burned his neck and face and damaged his eyesight. Read the rest of this entry »

Jacksonville Daily News: Warm bite for a good cause

January 26, 2013

By Don Bryan | The Daily News | jdnews.com | January 26, 2013

Hundreds gathered at New River Harley-Davidson Saturday to get a warm bite of chili and raise money for the Semper Fi Fund.

The 6th annual Screamin Eagle High Performance Chili Challenge included a chili contest, sampling and live music. Read the rest of this entry »

The Pain Within: War Wounds Run Deep for Returning Veterans

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January 23, 2013

By Karen Guenther: Founder, President and CEO of the Semper Fi Fund | The Huffington Post | huffingtonpost.com | January 23, 2013

Amidst the end-of-year hustle and bustle, most Americans were understandably preoccupied with shopping, travel and family. So many Americans also failed to notice the tragic milestone we passed this holiday season: in 2012, combat deaths were outnumbered by veteran suicides, reaching a record high. It's a startling statistic, particularly when you pause to consider its implications. For the last decade, we've seen tens of thousand of soldiers return home with injuries, many of whom had serious brain or spinal damage. But these numbers only account for the wounds we can see -- and it's the damage outside our field of vision that's sometimes the most lethal. Read the rest of this entry »