“I am so honored to know someone who cares. Know what you are doing is giving us hope.” Read the rest of this entry »
Captain Jason Pak traveled the world as an Army brat. In 2007, he received an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point, graduating in May 2011 with a degree in systems engineering. Jason went on to field artillery school and deployed to Afghanistan in October 2012. On December 12, 2012, an IED (improvised explosive device) blast claimed both his legs and two of his fingers. Read the rest of this entry »
“Snowboarding saved my life,” says Sergeant Kirstie Ennis, a veteran of two deployments to Afghanistan. “Being a part of Team Semper Fi changed my life for the better. The love and support that comes from TSF keeps me and many others going. TSF is family.” Read the rest of this entry »
Born in Arco, Idaho, and raised in Idaho and New Mexico (his family moved to Los Alamos when he was an adolescent), First Lieutenant Micah Andersen has always enjoyed school, athletics and the outdoors. Growing up, Micah loved hiking, camping and shooting, and enjoyed being out in nature with his friends and family. He played rugby in high school and college, and is an avid reader with an inquisitive mind. He attended Boise State University, where he received his Bachelor’s degree in political science with a minor in military science. Read the rest of this entry »
On November 26, 2010, United States Marines Sergeant Gabriel Martinez and Corporal Justin Gaertner saw their lives irrevocably altered in a split-second, a moment that would forge a life-long bond. Today, for the first time in four years, the friends had a chance to reunite, thanks to The Bob and Renee Parsons Foundation and Celebrity Fight Night. Here is their story. Read the rest of this entry »
“I had my digging knife with me,” says Staff Sgt Mark Zambon, recalling July 5, 2012, the day he reached the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro. “I got to the top of the mountain, found an isolated spot on the rim of the volcano crater and dug a hole. The last time the knife hit dirt before that was Afghanistan soil.” Read the rest of this entry »
“For the first couple of years we were together, we didn’t spend Valentine’s Day with each other,” said Courtney Carnes, who met her husband Garrett in 2008. “I don't think we spent a Valentine’s Day together until 2013—Garrett was either deployed or working or we were in different parts of the country.” Read the rest of this entry »
“I had a bad day at work,” Cedric says, recalling July 25, 2012—the day he stepped on an IED. “My bad day at work just happened to be a day that changed my life. Someone has a bad day at work, they lose their job; I kept my job, but I lost my legs.” Read the rest of this entry »
Bernard joined the Navy in 2000 and, after studying aviation structural/hydraulics, deployed to Afghanistan twice with SEAL Team 3, first shortly after 9/11, and for a second time in 2003. His service took him to Japan, to California, and, in 2008, to Iraq for two deployments – he was injured by a car bomb in Sadr City in December 2008. Read the rest of this entry »
“Just because I’m blind doesn’t mean I don’t have vision. I believe God kept me alive for a reason, and that’s to tell my story.”
So says Marine Corporal Matthew B — the first blinded amputee in history to re-enlist in the Corps.
Matt’s story begins in Petersburg, Virginia, where he was born; and in Winchester, Kentucky, where he was raised. He was always interested in sports, playing baseball until he was 13 and starting with basketball during his freshman year of high school. Read the rest of this entry »
“I want people to know that we are at war, and we still have guys getting injured all the time,” said Nancy, the mother of Corporal Cody S. “The day after Cody was injured, I did an interview—I wanted people to know that this is happening. I don't think people are really aware. All these guys need support.”
Born and raised in North Carolina, Cody was planning on being a missionary before he enlisted in the Army.
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Shurvon was finishing a patrol in his HUMVEE returning to base when it was hit by an IED in May of 2005. All were injured, but Shurvon was most serious. He suffered a broken left leg, lung blast, six broken ribs, and his jaw was broken in four places. Six days after Shurvon’s brain was deprived of oxygen resulting in his traumatic brain injury. Shurvon is now paralyzed and is unable to communicate with speech. Read the rest of this entry »
“Life is a teacher. It will give you the tools to solve every problem that comes up.”
When most people see a service member in a wheelchair or with a prosthetic limb, they can quickly begin to understand the sacrifices made by that service member on behalf of all Americans. Read the rest of this entry »
Staff Sergeant Courtney "Corey" Petersen (Ret.) was injured in 2007, leaving her paralyzed from the chest down. During her month-long stay in intensive care, The Semper Fi Fund assisted Corey's husband to ensure that he had the resources needed to care for his wife.
"Sometimes you can do everything right, plan, take safety precautions, and accidents will still happen. Read the rest of this entry »
Born in Los Angeles and currently living in a suburb of San Diego, Marine Corporal Jose A. always wanted to join the military.
“My grandfather served in the Army,” he said. “I grew up with him talking about that, and it really interested me. As I got older, I saw that the Marine Corps was the most challenging branch, so I enlisted right out of high school.”
“I wanted to do something I could be proud of,” Jose continues. “I couldn't think of anything better than the Marine Corps: It represented honor and courage, and that's what I wanted.” Read the rest of this entry »