Hello Brett, I would like to express my appreciation for what Warriors Never Give Up has done for Gary. I know that he always has valued the time he served America in the military, and what he learned and experienced in serving. But he would also often speak of the painful experience of returning to a nation where he was cursed and spit at when he wore his uniform. This hurt has deepened in recent years as he observed other heroes returning from war to parades and celebrations which are featured on television and social media. He is happy for them to receive the honor they deserve, but it is such a contrast to how he and other Vietnam vets were treated.
I am thinking of the event organized at Cabela's by your organization a couple years back. The Cabela's staff and guests in the store formed a receiving line and applauded as the vets entered the store and walked to the reception room. I remember being in tears as I thought of the fact that this was the first time that Gary received a public reception such as this.
Each event that you have made possible for Gary through WNGU has been a time he thoroughly enjoyed. This last event - the fishing tourney at Lake Poinsett - was one he will never forget! He loved being with the group, learning a few things about fishing, the hospitality of the Eberts, and the comraderie that he shared in.
I am pleased to report that WNGU has helped Gary to be publicly proud of the time he served in Vietnam. Now he will wear a hat that displays "Vietnam Vet" and will stand up at concerts or memorial services where an emcee will ask for veterans of each war to stand and be acknowledged. In the past he would not do this. So thank you! Thank you for helping to erase an old hurt for this soldier.